Sunday, November 02, 2008

Ouch / Sympathy for the Actor

The New York Times printed a pretty brutal review of Toews' The Flying Troutmans. I say they're horribly wrong.

They did, however, print a good article about the unlikely adoption of Hemingway's For Whom The Bell Tolls as a favourite book for presidential candidates. McCain demonizes Obama for being a socialist yet idolizes Robert Jordan, the socialist freedom fighter from Hem's book. Irony, you are alive and well.

Anyways, last night I went out to the fall edition of the small press book fair, an event I've attended for years. This year's edition was a letdown. For whatever reason, they decided to try an evening set-up with a full slate of readers and musicians on stage. The tables for the small presses to sell their wares were significantly reduced.

That was a mistake. The joy of the fair for me had always been walking amongst the rows of tables, talking to the various authors and bookmakers. I almost always left the fair with a backpack full of chapbooks and zines and a head full of ideas for projects of my own. While reading are nice, I've always considered them to be an addition to the fair, not the fair itself.

The fact that there were still some tables actually made things worse because there really were not that many people paying attention to what was happening on stage. People were too busy talking to what writers there were, leaving the poets to read their works to a non-audience.

So I went, was underwhelmed and left less than an hour later. I popped by Mr. Jerk for some takeout supper (they have really great jerk pork) and headed for home.

The night being young, I rented a couple of movies. While watching the first one - smart people - I started thinking about acting. It's funny how we take things for granted. We just expect actors to portray a complete range of emotions, to inhabit other peoples' lives even in a so-so movie like smart people. I couldn't imagine doing that.

I mean that. I truly couldn't imagine acting in a movie, portraying the life of a character, displaying someone else's emotions. I tell people I took grade 13 drama because I had run out of english classes to take and they usually chuckle. It sounds absurd but it's actually true. I liked the writing part of it a lot, though, and that's about the only reason why I got a decent grade.

Man, it's a beautiful day out there. Yesterday was a day of cleaning and puttering about. Today, I think I will grab my camera and go for a long work.

1 comment:

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Acting feels so very foreign to me as well. I just feel completely ridiculous doing it. I wonder if actors ever do?