Every play is a miracle. It pays someone's bills after all. Maybe two people working on it will meet and get married.
Every tv show, film, every dramatic work is a miracle. It's a job. It's people doing their job. And making friends.
But I'm wrong. My idealism means everything. Nothing is more practical than this idealism. It takes just one, after a period of the necessary enragement, to stop and go--there is a world elsewhere. I am going to elect to not participate in this culture, and create my own. I can chase the raging fire of my own soul and it doesn't matter if no one else can feel its heat. Yet. Or ever.
The universe is all encompassing and it sees, experiences, holds all. It may feel like it is deepthroating us all into submission. But don't lie and tell yourself that doesn't feel just a little good. A lotta good.
And maybe for a while, you need to be protected, so that no one else can put that raging fire out.
I hold this to be the truth. There are things that shift the course of the universe. Things humans are capable of doing. I like to think they are these huge dramatic gestures. And maybe, mostly, they are. And maybe they are just the smallest tiniest acts.
The only truly generous act I may have done in the theatre is answer my stage manager's daily calls. I was in the middle of a developmental workshop and whenever I received the call I responded with a quick thanks or got it. The stage manager wrote back to me just to say thank you for confirming I got the email. And I said, "you're welcome... doesn't everyone do that?" They said that, surprisingly, I am the first actor (they know) to respond to daily calls.
That's all it took for a moment of grace to happen. And every moment of grace shifts the course of the universe. It doesn't matter what you believe. You don't have to settle for blindness. Look up and around and you see the potential for grace everywhere, even while you are alone, peering down into the raging fire of the forest of your own soul, with a fear so great you may not want to look down again, but just know that the forest needs to burn itself in order to continue on, and if the fire is natural you need do nothing at all. Watch it all burn.
So yeah, I am cool because I answer my daily calls. Yes, I am tooting my own horn. I am not going to disclaimer this anecdote with an attempt to hide from my own divinity behind a false modesty by saying... "oh, please master don't think I am full of myself or anything I have nothing to contribute at all to you ever. I am just this lousy fool who is impeding on your majesty with this attempt to illustrate a moment of grace that I was surprisingly a part of. In fact, this moment only confirms how terrible I am. Please don't think I am good... or worse, don't think I am trying to make you think I am good. I am bad master, I am bad... so bad... so so bad... oh punish me master, punish me so good!"
Scroll through any long social media post these days and you see so many examples of this attitude. Particularly from men. I guess I am just sick of my excessively self-conscious "liberal" social media circles. I only ask... what do you have to prove? Get over yourself! What is with this putrid confessional attitude?
When it comes time to talk about my own shitbaggery I will talk about it. I've done much of this already. Why is our age so ashamed of itself? Honoring yourself is not the same as talking yourself up. Just get on with the thing. My elder sister/mother, Golda Meir has been said to have said Don't be humble you're not that important. But I only read this in a New York Times article, and what do they know (that is a serious question)?
I am losing the thread of this post.
Oh yes, my idealism is entirely practical. We cannot sustain a world where artists are not peering into the fire of their own souls and taking full responsibility for their own work and making their daily bread. People will get bored or angry with us. That might be a good thing at first, when we're first starting out, but eventually we're going to have to provide some pleasure. We can't do our actual work if we only learn from chasing what a small sector of people want from us instead of finding and building our own unique (and loyal) audience.
But idealism should never feel like a cloud of shame. Humans have been chasing the stars since they first could tell they were there.
You finished that script? You got cast in that role? You mastered that beat? Bravo. No joke.
I don't care what it is or who or what it was for. Unless it was for a Nazi. But even then... ok I will shut up. No actually, I'd imagine if the actual Nazis let me perform for them instead of killing me I would do it. I totally would. I mean we already do it for the "Nazis" of today, yes? The ones sitting in the Pentagon and our corporate sectors? Ourselves. Us little Eichmanns running around thinking we are the exemplars of chaotic good. We're all forgiven. God loves all her children. Keep doing your work, your work is for her alone. It doesn't matter who gets to enjoy it too. But changing gods' pronoun doesn't mean they exist. So maybe all we have is performing for our audience of Nazis. And if that's what we have, then that's beautiful nonetheless.
Sometimes work is just work, and play is just play. Actually that is always the case. Idealism just makes it more the case. And I don't care how much yoga you are doing, more is always better. Except when less is better. Less is usually better. So I am really saying idealism gives us less in general but it makes our work and play more. Better.
But today or tomorrow, with or without my idealism, which I will hold fast to like the one invisible rope from god that ties us all together, work is just work and play is just play.
And blow my brains out if that's not a miracle.
Don't take that literally. Or do, it might make for a great tv show. Someone putting a hit on a lonely, pretentious blogger. One who actually has a deep well of care for the world but opens his mouth without the proper timing. A kind of careful what you wish for when it comes to "recognition" thing.
I bet the Nazis would really enjoy that one.