The Allure of the Accent; or RA Goes Okie

british accentYears ago in the film Love Actually, British Colin Frissell can’t find a girlfriend at home. So he journeys to the U.S. in search of one. To his surprise, he finds himself a hit with American women the moment he opens his mouth. It seems American women dig British accents. Of course, this was hilarious to me because I’ve been exposed to British accents since I can remember. (I blame PBS and my mother’s undying crush on Laurence Olivier). So this phenomenon didn’t really surprise me, although my crushes on British actors have been totally incidental. Naturally.

Flash forward to last week. A few of us were chatting about the latest Into the Storm trailer and analyzing what we could of Richard Armitage’s American accent. While I couldn’t separate his voice from the background noise, a few said they thought the accent pretty decent. Then I heard something to this effect:

“As soon as he spoke American, he lost part of his sex appeal.”

My mouth nearly fell open at the heresy before my inner anti-fangurl exclaimed “that’s right, he’s British!” One chatter recounted how one favorite actor’s sex appeal leached away the moment he spoke in an American accent (dreadfully). This brings me to another meandering thought: it that why Americans are so keen on foreign actors getting American accents right – is it because of the aural dissonance, or the resulting perception of declining sex appeal? They’re just not that hot without the Queen’s English?  There’s no real reason why this should be except maybe prove the adage “everything is greener on the other side of the street,” or pond, as the case may be.  I picture RA trying out a Chi-caw-go accent with me listening incredulously and wondering what I ever saw him. Would I beg him to “speak British” again?   Could that possibly happen if I were wearing a blindfold?

I can’t decide how I feel about RA sprouting an American accent. I do know what if he fails to impress in the few scenes, I won’t be able to take him seriously the rest of the movie.  It sets my teeth on edge to hear an accent done poorly.  Truly, I’ve reacted the same way with other actors.  But will I find him less sexy? I don’t know yet.  Maybe the wet shirt will make up for that.

What do you think?  Honesty will get you kudos.  Total heresy will get you cookies.




Miiiidniiiiight… Not a sound from the pavement…

The Man strode away, hands in pockets as the music on his iPhone barely drowned out the klunk of his boots.  Behind him, the theatre Stage Door light clicked off, plunging the lane into half darkness.

Has the moon lost her meeeeemory?  she is smiling alone…

He sighed, pulling out the earbuds.  Of all the songs to pop up on his playlist, this would be it.

He’d felt at once exhilarated and exhausted after almost four hours on stage.  Hobnobbing and taking selfies with well wishers left him a bit antsy too, still pent up with adrenaline.  He’d decided to head back to the rented flat, walk it off, while listening to something relaxing.

With each step, the melody from Cats drained him, leaving him oddly morose.  He sighed again.  There was no help for it.   He clicked off the player and walked on.

A couple breezed past him, racing down a flight of stairs.  He glanced up in surprise, taking in the Southwark Tube station, realizing they were racing past him to catch the last train of the evening.  He looked around in slight confusion. Where could he go? He didn’t want to go home just yet.  After a few moments of thought, he turned onto Blackfriars Road and headed towards the Thames.  Yes, contemplating the water might help him sort things.

He had a problem -actually, two problems.

His cast mate distracted him and not in a good way.  Unknown to her, she grasped and groped his legs and thighs on stage in the most ticklish spots.  He always fought hard not to laugh.  Imagine him breaking into giggles while struggling to be stoic and imposing at the same time.  Breaking down like a silly novice. He’d never live it down.  Even his PR people wouldn’t be able to spin that.

But that wasn’t his worst problem.

He might have laughed at the irony had the situation not been so serious.  Like the character in the song, he remembered a different life too, a life filled with agile young dancers, of which he’d been a part.  But he’s left that behind, gone into drama, and not performed a pirouette in 20 years.

He’d forgotten how to dance.

Not that he needed to actually dance in the play but a lot of the actions required full body balletic movements, something he feared he’d lost.  He’d spent three years walking like he had gonads of stone during his long project and now, he wasn’t sure he could shake that.  Watching his young 23 year old cast mate dance circles around him in their scenes had been a revelation and a wake up call.  She was so spry, bouncing off chairs, slinking under his to grab his legs – she couldn’t be more graceful.  And the rest of the cast spoke volumes with each movement and gesture.  No matter how hard he tried, he couldn’t seem to hit that old balletic stride.  He felt rusty, oafish, clunky in comparison.

A jolt at his shoulder. He muttered a reflexive “excuse me” before noting that he’d reached the river at Blackfriars Bridge.   He took the stairs down to the bankside and continued walking east until St. Paul’s majestic dome came into view. Walking over to the railing, he gazed at the London nighttime skyline of St. Paul’s Cathedral, Millennium Bridge, and city skyscrapers in the distance. The river sloshed in a calming rhythm but did little to settle his nerves.  He gazed up into the night sky, too bright from the city lights to reveal any stars.  He sighed.  His people said he was the “star” but he didn’t feel like one.  He couldn’t even keep up with the portrayal by a girl still in drama school.  He was sure she’d noticed his rusty style – gonads of stone.  Had the rest of the cast?

He thumped the railing in frustration.  Him – an ex-dancer!  It was just too outrageous.

He’d have to get himself together, unlearn the last three years.  Didn’t they know that he was Macavity?   He was a CAT in his former stage life!  Fingers raking his hair, he thought hard.  His teachers told him the best refresher was to go back to basics.  Then that’s what he would do then.  Oh, he’ll show them – he just needed to get the tights and leotard back on to get himself into that right frame of mind again.  He had to set himself FREE again.  Yes, that was it.  He’d go home and get the tights…the whiskers… yes, it was all coming back to him now. He’d practice up a storm.

Running back up the embankment steps, he hailed a cab, his face wreathed in a smile.

Macavity Cat, Macavity Cat, Macavity Cat come out tonight!!!


RECAP- Why RA? : Looking for Mr. Goodcrush Part 2

I started this series in October 2011.  It had numerous parts but unfortunately I never completed it or answered the ultimate question.  Friends have encouraged me to repost and get on with it already.   Since it’s been almost three years with a new influx of fans, I think it merits a new conversation.


[I’m telling this story because it represents my background in fandom spanning a period of almost 20 years.  All observations and opinions stated are mine alone. This post has been months in the making because it’s been so difficult to articulate and pen.   It’s important to know this background so Dear Reader can understand upon what basis I attempt to answer the question of various bloggers in Armitage World: Why Richard Armitage?  This series will be posted sporadically as my thoughts gel.  Part 1 is here.]

Flash forward a few years.  I’d been out of fandom awhile and wasn’t looking for a new one.  Then while cruising the internet in 1996, I came across some stunning information about a defunct television show of which I’d been a fan much earlier.  There was a following for this show but the idea of get-togethers to watch episodes didn’t appeal.  So I had nobody with whom to share my enjoyment of this show except my parents who thought I was nuts.  When I came upon the tidbit that the show was rebooting, I knew there had to be others on the internet talking about this.  So I went back to AOHell, and found a forum pointing to an IRC chat room.  I’d never been in real geek chat room and the relative ease of use make chatting much more enjoyable. (This is on which the ArmitageWorld chat room is based.)  I found a small international group of men and women ranging from high school to Older Than Me.  Joy!

When the show finally televised its first episode in 15 years, we held a group viewing which to my surprise was a lot of fun.  The reboot flopped but the chat room continued.  This group had  been attending the national convention for this show in my city every Thanksgiving weekend for the past several years. I’d heard of this con, but the idea of grown people dressing up as characters made me wary.  Two people I’d met in chat convinced me to room with them and attend the con, reassuring me I’d have a blast.  Considering my past experience, I wasn’t keen on meeting virtual friends. What would these people be like?  I’d taken care this time to gauge their personalities and propensities but had I assessed correctly?

fandom chart

I was thisclose to not going but reasoned that since I lived in the same city, I could always go home.  So I packed and journeyed out to the boonies.  As soon as the two entered the room and gave me such radiant smiles, I instantly knew these women were as intelligent, sane, and friendly as they seemed online.  Everything would be alright.  We’ve been best friends for 15 years.  I met many more friends at the con which was a blast as promised. There wasn’t an ax murderer in the bunch.  The fans ran the gamut from grounded to suspect but I learned with cautious inquiries and observation, I could find a group that was a good fit for me.  One of the biggest things I enjoyed was the camaraderie and fun, things I had been looking for all along.

As luck would have it, I was in the inner circle of a fan club which sprang up around the star of the reboot. He was a British actor moderately popular in the UK but unknown elsewhere. From what we heard, the new Mr. Crush was a hard working, pleasant but very private married family man.  He was shy, charming, quietly intelligent with a sense of humor that wasn’t caustic.  He was also a good actor and quite good looking to boot.  He seemed like a safe bet.  I shared this assessment with a circle older, more mature fans who were grounded in their own lives, many of whom has been involved in other fandoms.

On the fandom scale, I was less than “hard core” but more than average. I’m not sure why I’ve never progressed to hard core in any fandom; maybe it’s my personality or Winston’s constant interference but I seem immune.  In any event, Mr. Crush appeared a good focus of my admiration.  Due to my past experience, I entertained no ideas about meeting him or going any further than socializing with my group.  I was happy for this fandom to inject some needed relief in my life. I could squee and be silly with a like-minded circle.  In a way, I was happy to feel light-hearted.  This group was similar in many ways to ArmitageWorld.

The chief instigator created a moderated mailing list, a place we could feel safe to chat about anything unmolested by internet trolls and unbalanced types.  List mom, as she came to be called, welcomed all forms of creative expression and it turned out we had quite a few talented writers and artists churning out fan fiction (both PG and erotic) amazing enough to be published.  We had paper newsletters and a digital magazine for which I wrote a short story for the first time in years. (That story is lost.)  This was fandom I’d never experienced; a safe group with whom I could feel connected and have fun.  The mailing list grew and flourished.  Meanwhile the IRC chat room also expanded exponentially after the convention.  We started role playing games on Saturdays.  For those who don’t know, we chose roles and then wildly ad libbed in real time mock episodes based on the old show.  Yes, hilarity did ensue as the cliche goes. (Remember this was social media before the advent of Twitter and Facebook.)  Some logs of these RPGs survive today.  Many of us have stayed connected. That was how things progressed for almost two years.

COMING SOON: The Fan Club Goes To The Next Level


The Crucible Previews – Whose Opinion Matters?

crucibleAlong with the rest of ArmitageWorld, I’ve been tracking the opening preview reviews coming in from blogs, Tumblr and Twitter.  Naturally I focused on Richard Armitage as the touted star of the production.  How did he do?  Does he have the chops to be a headliner?  Responses ranged from “brilliant,” “outstanding,” and “[left me] crying and shivering,” to well – underwhelmed.  A tweeter stated that as a lead, RA was “weak.”  The former reaction didn’t surprise me; the later responses have me a little concerned.   Was it an accident that the superlatives poured from fans who have a vested interest in seeing their man succeed; and the not so glowing comments issued from those who simply viewed RA as part of the ensemble?  If so, what would the critics say on press night?  Or does it really matter who says what?

Fan-wise, it might not make any difference.  Fans are delighted merely to see him in the flesh (no pun intended) and onstage in a quality production.  What could be better than that?  Looking through adoring eyes, they would be more likely to praise his strong points and forgive the weaker aspects of his performance. Then based on some reviews I’ve read, there is the problem of some fans not fully comprehending the play.  If they don’t understand the basis, how can they objectively judge the performance?    I’m not saying all fans have that difficulty or would deliberate skewer opinion in his favor no matter what, but there is an element of loyal blindness.   Does any of this matter?  They’d encourage their friends and family to see it too because it’s Richard -freaking-Armitage, right?

What about the opinion of the Old Vic?  Here is a man with star power who can put bums in the seats. Financially speaking, it doesn’t matter if RA proves stellar or only competent – he has a sizable fanbase willing to buy tickets more costly than other East End productions.  Although certain critics have decried using “popular television actors” to feel the theaters, the truth is live theater is a costly and competitive business – directors will do whatever it takes to fill the seats and keep their enterprises afloat – as long was critics don’t deem their lead actors box office poison.

But what about the critics’ opinions I’m keen to know?  These are people well versed in the artistic side of the theater and supposedly know a good production from a bad one potential goers should skip, thus affecting ticket sales and ultimately the possible closing of the show? Should they have that sort of power?  A case in point: a famous British theater  upon learning David Tennant had been cast as Hamlet essentially stated that the trend of theater directors hiring “TV actors” for productions was harming the artistic integrity of theater by lowering standards. The ignorant critic only knew DT from Doctor Who and was unaware of his previous acclaimed career in the RSC.  This snooty rant ultimately made the critic look bad, but imagine the sway he perceived himself as having by implying that non-theater actors had no use on stage besides being a box office pull and readers listened.  And yet, it’s the professional critics’ opinions directors and the theater-going public notice.  The directors crave acclaim for their productions; the public loathes wasting money on anything less than praiseworthy.  I admit wanting to see shows both popular and highly acclaimed, and really hope this is true for The Crucible.

But what if opinions diverge? What if the fans rave and the critics boo?  What if the latter say the cast is brilliant but the lead is not?  Would it matter to Old Vic if they are interested in more than the bottom dollar?  Would it matter to directors looking to cast other leads?  Should it matter?

And would it matter to Richard Armitage to be a popular or artistic success or both, and would it effect his ability to be cast in other productions?

When I began this post, I thought the answer would be that opinion shouldn’t matter as long as the audience and the producers get what they want.  Then I had to ask myself whether I’d travel thousands of miles to see a “popular” but not acclaimed actor in a play.  The answer is I’m torn.  On one hand, I’d love to see RA perform onstage; on the other, I want to see something considered more than competent. Tickets are expensive.  I want to see a prime specimen of outstanding theater. I want to be transported, so I can say years from now “oh yes, I saw him when he first returned to the stage in The Crucible.”  I want to be seriously impressed.  So I suppose professional criticism matters to me, even more than popular opinion.  Some may say there’s an aspect of elitism in there, but it’s my honest view.

What do you think?  Are you swayed by fan opinion or holding out for press night?




The man stared into the dark maw of his duffel bag willing it not to be true.

He scanned the small dressing room where he’d flung the bag’s contents: towel, shaving kit, gray t-shirt, jogging bottoms, dark jeans, new shirt still in the wrapper for the after party –

It wasn’t there.

His nerves ratcheted up another level.

Casting his mind back, he clearly recalled packing it that morning.   He’d gone to the gym – could it have fallen out there?  Surely he would have noticed, but things had been so rushed. Then he come straight to the theatre, to this room and stowed the bag.  Had he pulled it out at some time like a talisman and forgotten?  Closing his eyes, he remembered taking it from its resting place in the bottom of the drawer and carefully unfolding the tissue.  It still smelled spring fresh from the last washing and pressing along with a hint of cedar from the cachet he used to prevent moths getting to it.

It hadn’t started as a habit.  He’d happened to have it the first few times he landed a big role.  But after repeated incidents, he started seeing a pattern. and began wearing it as a humorous half baked superstition. He’d imagined cracking jokes at dinner parties and self-mockingly ascribing his success to it.  Still some niggling, primitive part of him whispered: what if it’s true?  So, he’d gone to lengths to preserve the precious item.  Until now.

Oh geez.

His heart pounded.

Calm down. Just calm down.

He’d been so focused on his private talisman, thinking all during rehearsal when he could hold it, feel it, soothe his jangled nerves.  If ever there was a time for it, now was it.  This was one of the biggest nights of his career.  After not gracing a stage in 11 years, he would do so again in one hour.  Sure, he’d done repertory theatre but  only in ensemble and never as a headliner and certainly not propped up by all the PR.  He was the main event, as they say, the one who could ensure the success of this production; the one whom critics would be watching, poison pens in hand.

Sweat beaded on his forehead.  Was it hot in here?

Here he stood, in the same place graced by such greats as Laurence Olivier and John Gielgud.  And now he here he was, audaciously wanting to begin the long climb to possibly taking a place by their sides.

Oh shit.

His stomach rolled.  Maybe it was true what they said about Olivier barfing before every performance.  He felt ill, the small space closing in on him.  Time was ticking away but he had to get some air.  He had to get out.


The man stood hands in pockets outside under the the stage door canopy breathing in the not so fresh evening air.  If the lose of his talisman portended bad luck, it was starting.  He looked up in to the light drizzle.  A few metres away huddled two young women in coats and nice frocks with their damp heads together talking and taking puffs from a fag.  He groaned, mouth watering for the taste of tobacco and smoke. Although he quit years ago, he could really use a fag now.  He ran fingers threw his short locks, shifting from foot to foot.  The rain didn’t help his mood. If anything, he felt more morose and antsy.  It crazy to think he could do this, that he could return to the stage after many years having been only an ensemble player and think he could pull off a headliner.  He should have started smaller – joined another ensemble as a secondary character and worked his way up.  Too late now.  Time to consider what to do when he bombed.


One of the women handed the fag to the other, waved and headed around towards the front of the theatre.  The other took a few more puffs then suddenly looked his way.  She broke into a smile.

Oh hell.  She recognized him and was probably a fan.  He really didn’t feel in the mood for this right now, but politeness drilled into him since childhood forced him to return the smile – if only he could.  His eyes begged “I’m sorry” and he dropped his head.

Her smile faltered as lines of concern replaced it.  She called softly to him.  Hey.

He looked up, expecting a nasty reply for his attitude. Instead, he met two compelling eyes and a radiant confident smile.  Hey, break a leg man, she said.  Giving him two emphatic thumbs up signs and a wink, she turned and walked away.

He blinked, watching her back until she turned the corner.  He thought of the caring and concern in her eyes and the faith transmitted by the two thumbs up.  She and her friend had come to see him, to watch him ply a craft he loved, to enjoy the theatre that he loved.  The place would be packed with well wishers rooting for him, waiting to be transported by him.  He looked up into the rain, letting the drops wash away the paralyzing self-doubt and panic.  He would do what he’d always done – his best.  It would have to be good enough.

He opened the stage door and went inside.


The stage assistant rapped on his door. Five minutes until curtain call.  She moved to adjust his costume and stumbled.  Oh, there’s something here by the door, she said and left.  He peered down and there it was.  Picking it up and holding it to the light, he grinned.  The talisman – an old pair of red Calvin Klein briefs, slightly faded and a little stretchy in the waist now, but well maintained.  He chuckled.  Imagine a pair of pants throwing him into such a tizzy.  A bit disturbing and crazy making actually.  But what should he do?  He had no spare pants; should he wear them?  They were still clean and not trod on, not that that really mattered – he’d resurrected worse from his bedroom floor.   After thinking a few minutes, he chucked the pants into the duffel bag.  A check in the mirror decided the issue.

Naaaaah.  He’d go commando and knock  ’em dead.


Hey, break a leg, Richard Armitage.


RECAP: Why RA: Are You Sitting Comfortably? Part 1

I started this series in October 2011.  It had numerous parts but unfortunately I never completed it or answered the ultimate question.  Friends have encouraged me to repost and get on with it already.   Since it’s been almost three years with a new influx of fans, I think it merits a new conversation.

[I’m telling this story because it represents my background in fandom spanning a period of almost 20 years.  All observations and opinions stated are mine alone. This post has been month in the making because it’s been so difficult to articulate and pen.   It’s important to know this background so Dear Reader can understand upon what basis I attempt to answer the question of various bloggers in Armitage World: Why Richard Armitage?]

Are you sitting comfortably?  Then I’ll begin.

fandom-by-the-crayola-of-doodahWay back in the early 1990’s, I was involved in a major fandom. I was in my early 30s who had just left a bad long term relationship. I was still a bit naive and callow and frankly, not happy with my life.  I found a group (let’s call them Alice, Bea, CeeCee, and Daria) of what I thought to be like-mind fun women in a forum on AOL. (There might have been a few more of us, but these are the ones I remember).  Anyway, AOL was not so fondly called AOHell because lasting through the long connecting handshake and reaching the forum was a labor of love in the days of 4800 baud dial-up. This fandom surrounded a show that became a major convention industry.

Our group focused upon one actor on the show known to have an extremely dry sarcastic sense of humor.  We decided, sight unseen, to attend a convention in San Diego and meet.  It was a big affair and many of us had never attended such an event.  It was a beautiful city with fantastic weather and we all enjoyed the adventure of it all.  The actor was funny and in his element onstage.  The audience was not disappointed.   My job didn’t send me to industry conventions, so I thought this was a wonderful excuse to travel,  make friends and see new places.  I was terribly green and unschooled in the ways and personalities of fandom.  I’d never traveled before to see any celebrity, so it felt quite weird and daring.  It was a chance to get together, and be giggly, girlish and silly, a stage I missed out in my adolescence.  It wasn’t my first actor crush but it was the first I had ever actively shared with any one else. I don’t recall having any expectations of the actor aside from wondering how he looked in person and how he would present himself out of character.  At such a large event, I didn’t even expect to get an autograph or attempt it.   I perceived no “relationship” to him apart from being a fan which was a distant abstract concept to me and I was content to stay that way indefinitely.

It never occurred to me to examine some of my travel mates more closely or even the actor himself.  I assumed our only motivation was to have a good wholesome time because that was my mindset.  That brings to mind the old legal adage, “to assume, is to make an ‘ass’ out of ‘u’ and ‘me’.”  As I said, I was naive.

fandomI was late joining the group and therefore didn’t know that a history already existed between Daria and the actor. She was a nice,  sweet, very unassuming woman who was something of a door mouse.  She was on a first name basis with Mr. Crush who knew her on sight. I was aware she’s lost a great deal of weight but not that she did it to impress him.  She lavished him with expensive presents but lived hand to mouth in garage back of her parents’ home while she toiled in a low paying job.  All of this information came out as we met from time periodically for the conventions.  After awhile the thrill of traveling receded and I could see the dynamics of this group.  Of the five of us, Bea and I were there for the camaraderie; Alice and CeeCee seemed to teeter on taking all this too seriously and Daria was disturbingly intense.

As my awareness of the dynamics grew, I became more uncomfortable as was Bea.  Things came to ahead when we traveled to be in the audience of a radio program starring Mr. Crush.  This was the first time I’d had a chance to have a one-one encounter with him.  Some in the group was thrilled about this and seemed a bit too in earnest in their pursuit of his attention which I found crossing the line.  On the fateful evening, Daria, Alice and CeeCee waylaid him in the corridor of the hotel.  From what I could see he was smiling and comfortable, so Bea and I approached.  As I stated, he has a very dry sarcastic personality, but in that moment something in his demeanor indicated that he was actually laughing at us.  I don’t know if I was being overly sensitive;  but life had taught me to recognize veiled contempt when I saw it. Maybe that’s not what he intended to exude but that’s how it felt.  I was turned off.  The three were clueless but the two of us were DONE with the whole thing. It was as if I’d taken a step outside myself and viewed the situation with a cold objective eye.  My fangurling dropped away.   I was disturbed by the trio, by me even being there and mostly by this actor. In a flash, I wondered what kind of man he really was and whether he was the type of person I should admire.  I recall thinking, “maybe it’s not a good thing to get too close.  Just who the hell is this guy?”  The group broke up shortly afterwards.

My fandom isAs far as I know, the trio are still fans, 18 years later.  I saw Alice on Facebook two years ago talking about seeing him in a play.  We don’t know if Daria was still hoping to be noticed.  We lost contact with CeeCee.  Bea confided a few months after the breakup she had similar misgivings.

I came away from the group a bit more savvy about fandom dynamics and with whom I should associate before jumping into a situation.  I also became aware that the object of my crush might not be who he seems but that I can never really know who exists behind that public persona.  Although I felt a bit more experienced, it turned out I still had a lot learn from my next fandom.

So what about you Dear Reader?  Were you part of fandom before Armitage World?  Is this fandom new to you?  Please feel free to share your stories.


Deja Vu

Here is something short and sweet.  Still feeling rusty.  Enjoy!



The man sat furious but resolute.

He imagined himself implacable, immovable in the face of his plight.  Surely under the grime, coarse scarf and dark great coat, his foes will see the light of his resolve.   He flexed his shoulders, noting the coils of tension.

Ohhhh, it felt so good.

“Okay.  Ten minute break!”

The man blinked as the dark seventeenth century gaol disappeared, replaced by the glaring hot lights of the photographer’s studio.  Hands tugged at the coat.  Smiling sheepishly at the assistant, he stood.  As the garment fell from his arms, he realized how hot and heavy it was actually.  In his mind, it had been a cold brutal winter.  He’d even shivered.

He accepted the offered bottle of water and idly walked over to the refreshment table filled with the usual fare: bagels, doughnuts, containers of juice, coffee.  Ugh.  Too bad he couldn’t have any of it – needed to watch his weight and all that.   Oh, and chocolate doughnuts – his favorite – large, freshly baked, lots of delicious gooey chocolaty frosting.   The tip of his tongue poked out as he leaned over in concentration.

He stood up.  Wait a minute.  He didn’t have to obsess about his weight any more.  He snorted.  His “sex symbol” days were behind him.  He no longer had to ripple his abs in order to get attention at auditions.  In fact, his career had taken just the artistic turn he craved with serious meaty role and no skin in sight.  While filming the trilogy, he’d been more covered up than anything.  The next film left his shirts soaked to the skin but hardly sexy.  He performed a staging and managed to be the only one to keep all his clothes during a racy scene, to his delight.   The last project had him deliciously mangy with long stringy hair, shapeless ragged clothes, and unkempt scruff.  Now he would play a seventeenth century Puritan onstage.  Not a milieu for any nudity.  Come to think of it, he’d not gotten his kit off in years.  Just as well – he was getting to old for that kind of thing.  Not that he’d struggled to be an “artiste” as they say, but it worked out nicely.  No more bum shots.  No more gratuitous half nude scenes.  No more need for chiseled abs.   Bring on the pizza and beer.  His fans might be disappointed, but that was the way it would be now.

He picked up the chocolate doughnut.  His stomach rumbled at the warm yeasty aroma.  Ah, come here my sweet.

“Your shirt, sir?”

The man blinked at the assistant.  “What?”

“I need your shirt.”

Would this require a wardrobe change?  Who knew Puritans were so stylish?  Sadly relinquishing the doughnut and licking his fingers, he fumbled with the buttons and handed over the garment, awaiting the next change.  Instead she produced a bottle, poured a bit of viscous liquid into her hands, and looked up with a faint smile.

“Boss says the next set will be shirtless.”  She broke into a full grin.  “I’ll oil you up a bit and add some smudges to match the face.”

He knew it was useless as soon as the words left his mouth. “But what does this have to do with-”

The photographer breezed by.  “Ah yes marvelous.  This part will focus on the characters vulnerability and defenselessness.  Take your place in two minutes.”

The man stood morose and not so resolute as hands rubbed him down – was she humming?  He doubted vulnerability and defenselessness would first cross fans’ minds.  His frowned.  He was pretty sure he had no half nude scenes on stage.  Didn’t he?  He glanced down at his abs.




The Good, the Bad, and the Crazy

Me vs. Menopause: Volume I

Me vs. Menopause: Volume I

Hey, it’s me again. And again.  And again.

The good news is I’m blazing my way back, although your mileage may vary on how good that is.  Like any egotistical writer, I’ll assume you’ve been whispering in corners brows furrowed, worrying and wondering what happened to my blatherings, snark, and deathless prose possibly about Richard Armitage.  Don’t worry, I’ve stashed months and months of thoughts on all three.

The bad news my depression went all wibbly wobbly.  No, Winston the black dog of gloom didn’t return.  Instead my hormones have been thrown into chaos by that horrid phase of womanhood, MENOPAUSE.  I could rant for days on the subject, but let’s just say that the turmoil negated the efficacy of the anti-depressives and stopped me in my tracks.  Not only did the blogging stop, everything else did as well.  Now that things seem to be settling and the meds work agreeing to agree, another window of opportunity presents itself to start pushing the proverbial ball back uphill.

The crazy is that today seems like a new year to me when I rise yet again, dust myself off and make resolutions: start blogging again,  fire up Scrivener and write again, and think of life in terms of a story to tell.  Surprisingly, I miss writing – not that I’m a great storyteller – but the mechanics of thinking about things and translating the story from my mind to the medium.  I suspect the habit of regularly blogging ignited something internally.  Dr. G. also believes that blogging is beneficial to psychological processing.  So you see, it’s what the doctor orders.

I’m not sure whether to blog every day, but I’ll  share thoughts about the latest doings of Mr. A. or maybe let The Man tell you.  Any ideas are welcome.