Monday, October 23, 2006

What Might Have Been

I was going to blog about a rather appalling talk I heard in Sacrament meeting last Sunday (the general gist of it being that men need to lie to their wives), but then I decided that I need to just let it go.

Then I was going to blog about how I can't wait to meet my newest niece, and how I sent her a teensy tiny fleece jacket and a little shirt with a lamb on it (and how suddenly Old Navy has super cute baby clothes), but then I realized the person who'd be most interested in that information already knows about it, having given birth to said niece.

Then I was going to blog about how my husband took me to a Massive Attack concert, and how the people behind us passed a joint up and down the row, and how my brother-in-law asked me what I thought of the concert, and the best description I could come up with was "loud." But then I realized that there might be some Massive Attack fans out there whom I don't want to offend, and I didn't want them to get the wrong idea, because I actually did like some of the songs, even though they were really, really loud.

Then I was going to blog about how, in return for going to the Massive Attack concert, my husband offered to listen without prejudice to some of my favorite music, and how I started to compose a cd for him until I realized that there is absolutely no way on this earth he's ever going to like Paul Simon, The Indigo Girls, Irish folk music, or songs from Sweeney Todd, and so I decided to just be grateful that we both like classical music, Moby, and selected hits from the '80s, and not to blog about what a musical geek I am.

Then I was going to blog about how I was doing yoga in the corner of the 24 Hour Fitness exercise room when two girls in tight spandex came in and started dancing, and one of them said "Watch this!" and went leaping into the air, landed awkwardly, and started screaming that she'd torn her ACL, she just knew it, and while her friend ran for some ice, she called her boyfriend on her cell phone and said, sobbing, "I guess being a Laker Girl just wasn't meant to be."

But then I realized that it was 1:57 am, so I decided to go to bed instead of blogging.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Fright Night

Six years ago, on a beautiful autumn evening in Manhattan, my friend persuaded me to do something that would come back to haunt me:

She took me to see The Exorcist.

"It'll be fun!" she insisted, practically dragging me toward the giant doors of the AMC Theatres in Times Square. "I've heard that it's not even scary! It was made in the 70s! It's totally dated!"

Sitting in my seat with a bag of popcorn that cost approximately half my paycheck, I was already regretting my decision by the time the lights dimmed. I'm not a complete wimp when it comes to scary movies, but in order for me to have a frightfully good time, two guidelines must be followed:

1. I must have control over my surroundings. This is why I hardly ever watch scary movies in the theater. If I get too scared, I need to be able to get up, turn on a light, walk around, throw a blanket over my head, mute the sound, or, in extreme cases, run screaming from the room.

2. Gore is right out. Wait Until Dark? Love it. Hitchcock? He's a genius. The Others? Bring it on, spooky Nicole Kidman and your creepy kids. Texas Chainsaw Massacre? Not in a million, trillion years.

I have learned through sad experience that if I break one of my rules, tragedy is almost certain to follow. For example:

When I was in junior high, I was at a sleepover when everyone (but me) decided it would be a great idea to watch Poltergeist at midnight. I didn't want anyone to think I was a scaredy-pants; especially my friend's super cute older brother who was inexplicably hanging out with a bunch of 13-year-olds. I managed to make it until the beginning of the clown-under-the-bed scene, and then, threatened with an impending heart attack, whispered to my friend that I had to go to the bathroom. In my haste to escape the room before that clown did what I sincerely hoped he was NOT GOING TO DO, and being slightly disoriented by the dark room, I ran straight into a heretofore unclosed sliding glass door with such force that I was knocked backwards and directly into the lap of the super cute inexplicable older brother.

(Long after the bruise on my face healed, the bruise of early adolescent mortification remained.)

And so, on that October night six years ago, I really should have known better than to let my friend talk me into seeing a film about demonic possession in a darkened theater. While everyone around me was laughing at the cheesy special effects and hokey dialogue, I was absolutely terrified. Around the time when the possessed girl spider-crawls backwards down the stairs (someone please hold me), I turned to my friend and whispered:

"I have to go to the bathroom."

Standing in the lobby, I munched on my pricey popcorn and considered my options. I didn't want to desert my friend, but I knew that if I went back into the theater I wouldn't be able to sleep that night. So I sat down on a bench, pulled my lunchbreak book out of my purse, and prepared to enjoy my autumn evening in a non-terrifying way.

As I opened my book, a super cute boy walked by, and smiled at me.
I smiled back, and you know what's spooky?

He looked a little like my junior high friend's inexplicable older brother.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Hooray! Hooray!

I'm in a play!

This is the play:




This is an official description of the play:

"In the last decade of the twentieth century, a beautiful young woman in nineteenth century clothing is found floating on an iceberg in the middle of the North Atlantic. When rescued, she says only one word: Titanic. The characters and their interactions, which both deepen and unravel the mystery, reveal that few people are what they seem."

I am not the beautiful young woman. According to the audition notice, this is who I am:

Halbrech: Attractive, very intelligent, doctor of an undisclosed specialty.

This, according to the script, is what I will be wearing:



(The script does not say anything about posing or having hair like this person.)

This is how many people are in the play:

4

This is one of my lines:

"OPEN THIS DOOR!"

And this is all I can say, because my husband reads this blog, and he doesn't want to know anything else about the plot before he sees the show. (He is one of those people who loves surprises.)

This is how excited I am to be in a play after my 3-year hiatus:

VERY!

Friday, October 06, 2006

They Seek Him Here, They Seek Him There


The other night, I caught the last half of a movie I hadn't seen in a long time. A movie that I've probably seen at least 15 times since it was produced in 1982. A movie starring, strangely enough, Jane Seymour. (I'm not a huge fan; especially when she tries to do a Southern or American accent. I mean, why couldn't they have just changed it to Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman From England? That would have made it easier on all of us. Not that I ever really watched Dr Quinn: Medicine Woman, but I'm just sayin'.)

Anyway, this film also stars Anthony Andrews, and a very young (and already quite quirky) Sir Ian McKellen. Have you guessed what it is yet? Here's your next hint:

"Sink me, the lady's a poet!"

If you remember that line, we need to talk.

After I first saw The Scarlet Pimpernel in high school, it quickly became my all-time favorite romantic movie. (Followed closely by "Somewhere In Time." Hum the theme song with me now . . .) Anthony Andrews was soooo dreamy, with that whole "I'm pretending to be an effeminate fop but secretly I'm a very masculine manly intelligent man" thing he had going on. And Jane Seymour didn't know! And he couldn't tell her! But she married him anyway! (And why was that, again?) And then he thought she betrayed him (which I HATED - stuff like that in movies always makes me SO uncomfortable. I can't stand it when characters are kept apart by misunderstandings and/or lack of information. Except in the A&E Pride and Prejudice, but that's mostly because I have Jennifer Ehle's performance to enjoy, and Colin Firth to look at.) What was I saying? Colin Firth . . .

So I asked my husband, the trusty Steve, if he'd ever seen The Scarlet Pimpernel.

"The one with Jane Seymour and Gandalf?" he asked. "My sisters loved that movie."

I told him that I and all of my friends had loved it, too, and we thought Anthony Andrews was to die for.

"Yeah. My sisters did, too. I never understood that. Wasn't he, uh, really effeminate?"

Yes, I explained. But that was his personna, you see. He had to pretend to be a fop. It was a matter of life and death!

"Okay, but even when he wasn't using his personna, wasn't he still, pretty much, really effeminate?"

My teenage heart wanted to cry out "No!", but having just seen part of the film, I had to agree. Yes, Steve. Yes, he was. But we loved him anyway. He fought for truth and justice and he wore a cape and hid in a tree and rescued Jane Seymour. And that was enough for us.

And so my question, dear readers, is this: Did you, too, love this movie? Did you fall victim to Anthony Andrews' girlish charm, and long to sail away with him into the poorly-filmed fake sunset?

If not, who were the movie men who made your teenage heart swoon?

Sunday, October 01, 2006

A New Chapter

As you may have noticed from several recent blog entries, acting has been on my mind as of late. Oddly enough, by the time I marched down the aisle to get my diploma, my MFA program had so completely exhausted me that I wasn't sure I ever wanted to act again, or at least not for a very long time. (Very dramatic of me.) So, I took a year off to recover, enjoy my new marriage, and pay off some student loan debt. And then, I started to miss the whole theatre thing. Quite a bit. It was around that time that I was cast in the Joseph Smith film; an experience I feel very fortunate to have had. After filming ended, I decided it was time to tackle the acting world once more. Unfortunately, my knee then decided that it was time to have surgery and take FOREVER to recover. And that was really lame. (Pun intended.)

It's been eight months since the surgery and, though I'm still not able to leap tall buildings with a single bound, I'm going to try to be an actress again. To tell you the truth, I'm a little scared. But it's now or never. (Well, not really. That was kind of dramatic.)

To aid in my artistic pursuits, my truly amazing and fabulous sister has created a website for me. (Did I mention she is amazing? And beautiful!) I feel a little bashful sharing it, which is silly; I mean, actresses are supposed to be all "Look at me!" and "Hey! Over here with that spotlight!", but I've never really been a fan of the whole self-promotion part of showbiz. However, since it's mostly family, friends, friends I haven't met yet, and the occasional lurker who read this blog, and as one of the first steps in my journey back to doing what I love:

www.emmelynthayer.com

I'm going to turn off comments for this one, but there's an email address on the website, if you feel commentarily inclined. I'd be happy to hear from you!

(Unless you send me spam.)