So a quick update on that whole 'racialism' in London 'It's Not Easy Being Brown' story..
Last Friday I returned to the scene of the crime. Back at the club where we got denied entry.
This time around my friend and I went to the club for a comedy night and strategically stuck around afterwards so we could avoid any entanglements with the racialist door men..
An hour or so after the comedy night ended (great stuff by the way; heartily recommend going to these stand-up gigs.. especially if you get in for free!), the club started filling up.. With Blacks & Browns. It wasn't good. So we left.
Ah life, your ironic twists are starting to become Sooo predictable!
So what was December like?
Gather ye round and I will tell you a tale; a tale of Dreams and Dreamers..
November ended with me making little headway towards my goal of finishing my script, but I was still determined to get it done. One of the major obstacles was that, after being on hiatus throughout most of my life, my social-life finally decided to turn up!
It's still busy even now.. I've said it before and I'll say it again. I won't complain. I know all too well what the opposite is like, when you really fancy going out but have no options; so having tonnes of options, though expensive, is a million billion times better. Just need to find a way to balance it so I actually get some work done!!
The month began with me going to my final Salsa class of the year. My attendance is intermittent at best, so I'm still pretty crap at it. It was fun, but one of my resolutions for 2012 is to finally learn it, and then knock it on the head! Get it done & dusted and never ever have to go to another class ever again!
I attended a one day film school event at the 'Central Film School' near Brick Lane. Like most 'experiences' I bought it via Groupon. I was addicted to Groupon for a long time.. Buying up all these experiences and then hardly ever going to them, or struggling to find people to go with me! I finally got over my addiction when all they started offering were 'Spa Days' or 'Laser hair Removal' ..I really need that Laser hair removal, but at a couple o' hundred quid, it's still too dear ..Ah, maybe someday when I'm rich I can finally have that smooth back & crack I always dreamed of! Haha.
The Film School was a sobering experience. Taught by industry professionals.. sorry, 'British' industry professionals, all they did was explain to you that you'd spend your whole life working hard & being treated like crap by insecure two-faced snakes above you in the hierarchy, making no money, and trying to advance your so called 'career' by selling out on every principle you ever had, until one day you'd wake up in your forties, have no life, no partner, no kids, and no dreams. The harsh realities of working in the film industry.
Is it worth it?
My enjoyment of life is a million times more important to me than my desire to make movies. Maybe that's why I haven't made any...
I didn't subscribe to this pessimistic 'reality'. Who's to say you can't succeed, AND have a good time while you're doing it? If it hasn't been done, then fcuk it; I'll be the first. Watch this space people!
It was a million miles away from the 'Raindance' film school day that I attended in February. That was led by a Canadian, and thus a billion times more optimistic. We left there feeling like we could make a movie that very day if we wanted to; charged and full of gusto! Ready to take on the world.. before we all went back to living our lives exactly as we had before!
..God only knows how super-charged we'd be if we were taught by an American?! Those people are optimistic on another level! & Thank God for that! Because optimism is not only an essential ingredient when it comes to making movies, but also when it comes to living life! Politics aside, I'm glad optimism still survives in the good ol' US of A.
I still enjoyed the Central Film School one-day film school. It was totally worth attending, even for the reality check, but especially for the cinematography lesson. If you're into film, I highly recommend attending.. but if you can only choose one; go to Raindance. You'll feel a lot better for it!
It was a busy day, and after the film school day, I had a Birthday party to attend. It was a 'Facebook friend' which meant I'd only met that person a couple of times! Still, I loves to party, and they invited me, so what the hey!
I got to the venue.. and I didn't know anyone there! The person who's Birthday it was hadn't arrived, and nor had any of her friends. I didn't know any of her friends either, and I didn't have her number.
So there I was, by myself, in a club full of strangers.
Now, I'm a sociable chap, so I just took it as an opportunity to make some new friends. Luckily, the people at this place were pretty friendly, which was unexpected, considering they were all Brown! I guess it's 'cos they were more mature than the usual rowdy cocks & slappers that tend to give us Brown people a bad name.
I ended up befriending two separate groups of chicks, and had a damn good time with the both of them. Then my friend arrived, and I had an even better time! Dividing my time between three separate groups was waaay more fun than chilling with just one group, which is what would have happened had I not found myself alone to begin with.
All this because I took a risk, both in going out for the night and in chatting to randoms. Sometimes it blows up in your face, and I won't lie to you, when that happens, you usually swear off 'risk-taking' forever! But more often than not, it works out in your favour. Not sure if I'll go out partying by myself anytime soon, but I know that if I'm forced into it, I can turn it into a damn good night. My advice? Throw yourselves in at the deep end! ..You might have to sink a couple of times first, but you'll get the hang of it. Soon enough you'll be surprised at your innate ability to swim through adversity!
A few days later I attended some trial Acting classes at 'City Academy' (London).
'Cos I'm a Director innit! I need to know how to manipulate, I mean 'understand' actors, so I can bring out the best in them!
All joking aside, it was pretty damn awesome. I recommend EVERYONE attend some acting classes in their life, and the sooner the better!
I did a musical theatre course at 'Pineapple' a few years ago, and honestly, it was one of the most fun experiences of my adult life! ..But I'd forgotten most of the lessons I'd learned, so this class was a great refresher.
If I could only convey one lesson it would be this: Learn to laugh at your mistakes, and don't be afraid to make them!
In the so called 'Real' world, making mistakes is so frowned upon that people become pathological liars to cover them up! Whereas in acting, 'mistakes' are often the birth place of innovation. Hell, the same could be argued for any aspect of life!
Also, when 'mistakes' do happen, rather than feel ashamed and guilty, in acting one learns to laugh at them. 'Bloopers' anyone? That same attitude should be applied to EVERY aspect of life! Can you imagine how much fun life would be?
That's another thing about acting, learning to have 'fun' with it. We did some warm up exercises, and it's amazing how difficult it is to get adults to have fun.. it's like ever since childhood, the 'fun' in life is beaten out of them, to the point where we forget 'how' to have fun! In the end, most turn to alcohol & drugs, confusing intoxication with fun.
Trust me people, sign up for some acting classes, even if it's just for 'fun'. Investing in something as 'pointless' as fun will do your body & soul more good than any professional qualification.
I just wish I had the money to continue it! ..Maybe I should get a professional qualification to help me earn the money?
A few days later I tried my first ever Bollywood dance class too!
Okay, Okay! the truth is, I bought a 'Living Social' voucher for three trial classes at City Academy, hence my unusually proactive approach to life. For those of you that don’t know, 'Living Social' is like 'Groupon'.. But with better experiences!
Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah, that Bollywood dance class. Awesome, people awesome. The last of my siblings is getting married next year, and I am DETERMINED to burn up the dance floor this time! ..At the previous three weddings, I've been shy & demure.. not at all reflective of my true personality, and all because I don't know any Indian dance moves! ..I know. I know. As if my parents weren't ashamed enough of me already!
I'm broke as hell, but I dunno.. Maybe I'll get lucky somehow, 'cos I really want to attend more of those classes. I need to know how to bust a move, Desi style!
Anyway, December is now a haze. Rare was the day that I stayed at home.. but I also did Jackshit towards my goals (other than my number one goal of enjoying life). I woke up on Christmas morning, having paid the price. I had the flu. Best Present Ever!
Apart from being forced to watch crappy old 'Eastenders' with mi familia, it was another Great Christmas, as it always is. Hope yours was too.
Now, as 2012 approaches with breakneck speed, thoughts turn to making sure it's THE year. The year where everything FINALLY happens. Because man, if it aint.. I really don't even want to contemplate it. The good news is, it's entirely in my own hands.
Great! With my track record, that's the last person I'd want in charge! Haha.
As I reflect on 2011, I really can't complain. Nothing life changing happened, but nothing bad happened either; it was all quite a lot of fun really.
2011 was by far the fastest year of my life, and I've got a feeling 2012 will go by even faster!
Life is passing me by, and the scary thing is, I'm getting used to it. I'm starting to grow comfortable with my lack of achievements and my impoverished 'loveless' lifestyle; accepting my status as the oddball of the family. The 'loser' amongst my friends.
We live in changing times; the status-quo is being challenged all around the world. Country's are falling and rising faster than ever before. The future is more uncertain than ever. That said, the individual has never had more control over his own destiny; we have more options available to us than ever before.
Too bad. We only have ourselves to blame.
The world is changing. I'm going to change too.
My survival depends upon it.
It's all to do in 2012.
We can do it.
You think you've got it bad, you wanna try being Brown!!!
Right! It's Friday night, one of the biggest party nights of the year; everyone in London is having their Christmas parties!! ..And I'm stuck at home. Talking to you.
So only one thing to do. RANT!
Now, you know me (if you don't, 'How do you do. Nice to make your acquaintance' or if you're a fit chick.. Silence. Turn. & Run!), I'm not one to play the 'Race Card'. EVER. But it's pretty damn hard when a club promoter blatantly tells you the reason you weren't allowed into the club is because they don't want any Asians in there. That's what happened last week.
Gasp! Shock!! Horror!!!
Puh-lease! Don't act so surprised.
You always knew it was the case.. you just didn't want to acknowledge it.
Pretty much like you didn't want to acknowledge the fact that you're utterly broke this year and technically can't afford Christmas..
Sorry, I know I wasn't supposed to mention that until after the January sales! :)
Okay, pop quiz hotshot!
Name a really handsome man?
Now name a really sexy woman?
Name a famous person you really like or admire?
Favourite musician or pop act?
I'm guessing all the people you mentioned are either white or black?
Hey, it's not your fault. My results are exactly the same.
The truth of the matter is, all the images of beauty and aspiration we're bombarded with are mostly white, with a few token blacks thrown in for good measure.
All the 'stars' & 'celebrities' we aspire to be like are the same.
Street cred, pop culture, film, music, TV, literature, you name it; all the main players are white, or to a lesser extent, black. On TV, I must admit there are a few token browns thrown in, but they're so cringe-worthy and uncool, most of us would rather they weren't there to be honest.
At least that's the case in jolly old England.
Maybe in your country it's different, in which case the racialism probably manifests itself in other ways.. like a good old fashion lynching.
Now, Britain, contrary to Daily Mail/Express propaganda, is still a white country. That being the case, shouldn't we brown peoples expect the media and pop culture to reflect this? I mean, in an ideal world, of course not! But this aint South Africa!
The crux of what I'm saying, as is often the case with me, comes down to my right to party!! It also concerns my battle to find a girl that doesn't have to first be convinced that brown men can in fact be 'cool'. But first and foremost, it comes down to my right to party!!
J'aime faire la fête! Me encanta ir de fiesta! I don't care what language it is, I LOVE to Party! (Thanks to 'Google Translate' by the way!!)
I could bitch & moan about the fact that we brown mans (it almost exclusively concerns men ..if you're a good looking girl, it doesn't matter what colour you are, the social world is your oyster) are discriminated against 'til I'm blue in the face.. the change of colour may help my chances, but it won’t change the way the world acts towards brown men. (I keep referring to us as 'brown men' even though everyone else refers to us as 'Asians' because I hate being called an 'Asian'! Asia is massive! It encompasses so many different countries, races and cultures! It's like referring to all Scots as 'Europeans' and never ever mentioning the fact that they're Scottish!)
When the club promoter explained to us that none of the clubs he promoted for (the ones dotted around the West End) wanted Asians, he reasoned it with the following explanation:
'It's a white world. What can I say bruv?'
He didn't like it, being 'Asian' himself, but there was nothing he could do. He went on to tell us how Asians got charged more entry in the clubs than their white counterparts and that the clubs could get away with it because regardless of what the clubs did, there would always be more Asians trying to get in than anyone else.
I'll agree, Asians are definitely not in short supply. But that doesn't mean they should be exploited or discriminated against.
It doesn't help their cause when they start begging doormen to let them in and offering bribes when they've been refused entry. Be proud for f**k's sake! Walk away and refuse to ever go there again!
We're going to these clubs to spend money; if they don't want our custom, screw 'em! I don't care how many fit chicks are in the club, a man's pride is worth more.
That's how I roll. But then, I don't get refused entry that often, but it has happened, and it has been blatantly racist.
A few years ago, myself and three friends were out having a good night. We wanted to continue the fun, so decided to hit a bar/club. The nearest one was a real $hit hole. The one underneath Centrepoint, 'Bar 101' I think it's called?
Those of you that know London know that no Londoner goes there. It is a proper dive, but sometimes you're in the mood for that kind of crap, so off we went.
The Polish door man who barely spoke English and was obviously a recent immigrant refused us entry.
Being refused entry to a $hit hole?! This had NEVER happened. EVER.
So we talked to the guy. He gave us the same old bull$hit about there being too many guys. There were four of us, and it was still early. As he was saying this, he let in a group of six guys. They were all white, whereas we were all brown. We pointed this out and he simply refused to discuss it further, saying he wasn't gonna let us in, and according to English law, he didn't have to give us a reason.
Man, I was on fire!
I was born and raised in London. It's my town, and I'm proud of it! As any visitor knows, all I do is talk up the place, and do my best to help others make the most of it!
Yet, here I was, being made to feel like a third class citizen.. by a foreigner no less!
I took my case to the Mayor, and was advised by one of his race-relations people that there was nothing I could do. Equality laws only apply to public organisations and not private premises, such as bars and clubs.
So that was that.
We brown men may pay the same taxes as everyone else, work just as hard as everyone else (or work harder & pay more taxes if you believe Indian propaganda!), but when it comes to expecting equal treatment when going out to enjoy one's self.. well, brown folk are better off not trying.
Stay at home, or better yet, go work at 'Subway', or some other fast food outlet, where you can take the abuse of people that have gone out and had a good time. But don't bother getting the 'ump, you're getting paid to take that abuse!!
Or better still, be stereotypical. Get a solid education, become a doctor or a lawyer, and that way you can spend even more time with people that have had 'a good time'!
You can either pump their stomachs in a hospital every Friday & Saturday night, or defend them in court when the law tries to nick them for being twats!
As said, rather than bitch & moan about it, lets think about this rationally for a moment.
Why are brown men so unwelcome in the world? Socially speaking.
Is it the smell?
The fact that we're ugly?
The child-like idiotic behaviour?
The lack of sex-appeal?
Or are these stereotypes merely evidence of a racist prejudice against us?
I mean I don't think it helps that there are virtually no examples of 'cool' or aspirational brown/Asian men in the media. No one a school kid would want to be like.. Like a footballer, or pop star, or a movie star.. Ofcourse, these figures do exist in India and countries of the sub continent, but we don't live there and didn't grow up there either.
At school, we all idolised the same 'white' famous faces. Our perception of beauty lay in the same white visage, consequently, all the boys (regardless of their ethnicity) all fancied the same white girls. Similarly, all the girls (regardless of ethnicity) all fancied the same white boys.
Admittedly, this was decades ago, and I'm sure brown people have become more mainstream since then; assimilated more completely. But I don't care about them. This is about me, and my generation, and the dilemmas we face when we try to go out and have a good time.. and when we're trying to pull a bird!
Oh. So is that what it all boils down to? An inability to attract girls.
As a gentleman, the last thing I like to do is discuss my love life. BUT! When it comes to 'pulling' I probably do better than most. When it comes to 'Love' I do abysmally though!
All I'm saying is, our perception of what is beautiful or what is 'cool' in the world is automatically programmed to be white or black. It's everywhere in the 'western world' we grow up in and the famous people we admire and aspire to be like.
I won't lie to you, pretty much all the chicks that approach me (and yes, it does happen) do so believing I'm either Italian, Spanish or some kind of mixed race. I never lie, especially about who I am, so when I tell these chicks that I'm Indian, I can literally see their faces drop.
Why is that?
Because being Italian, Spanish or mixed race is a million times 'cooler' than being Indian. I'm still that same charming guy they felt compelled to chat to, but now their perception of me has changed. So then they either make their excuses and go back to their friends, or they open their mind and realise that Indian guys can be just as 'cool' as white guys or black guys (cooler if you ask me!).
It is what it is.
On the subject of chicks, and their reaction to brown men, I will say this: white & black girls show me far far less prejudice than brown girls. I don't know why, but that's definitely the case in my experience (long & chequered though it may be).
I can't change people's perceptions single handedly, and I'm not helped by all the Indian guys that are complete and utter idiots (of which there are millions!!), but my point is, I shouldn't have to.
Why can't I just be judged by who I am, and not have to carry all the baggage of my damn ethnicity?
Where does this leave us then?
It's almost 2012. London is the most culturally diverse and tolerant city on Earth. Yet still a native Londoner gets told he's not welcome in the bars & clubs around this town because of his ethnicity. Is it the same in the workplace? What about the dating game?
Finding love, following my dreams and making my way in this World isn't going to be as straight forward as I first thought.
That won't stop me though.
I'm almost afraid to read the whole book after reading a few pages!!
Long ago, perhaps a decade or more, I struggled with the notion that I was merely a 'type' of person. How could this be?
Surely I was unique, After all, no one shared my outlook on life let alone my struggle. My situation and dilemma were singular to me. What I want from life was 'above' the everyday ambitions of the rest of humanity. I placed myself on a perch, and looked down on everyone that accepted less from life than living their dreams..
Ofcourse, this was not only ironic, but also completely ridiculous. I was (& still am) a penniless bum; how the hell could I look down on anyone??!
Yet I found a dignity in poverty and a pretentiousness in casting aside the monetary avarice that governed the rest of the world.
I would never whore myself doing something I didn't absolutely love, just for money. We live but one life, our time on this Earth is finite; selling that time for money doing something you don't love is all the same, be you a prostitute or a bank clerk.
Bear with me; I was in my early twenties and still coming to terms with the reality of life away from the class room. It was as if I had to question the fundamentals of every thing in life and make sense of a world with new rules..
I still question everything, but my conclusions are no longer so black & white. I'm far more Buddhist these days, in that I find 'the middle way' is often the most sensible.
But it wasn't just about money. It was EVERYTHING!
Why was it that the most brash and disruptive people got further in life than those that were kind and gentle?
Why was being 'good' it's own reward, yet being 'bad' meant an actual gain?
Doing whatever the hell you felt like doing was far more gratifying than repressing your desires and trying to be 'good' (be it society's definition of 'good' or a religious sense of the word).
And perhaps the most frustrating distortion of reality was in the realm of women! (Big surprise there!)
My whole life, I was raised to be especially nice and sensitive to women. I was the 'nicest' guy there could be, yet when it came to chicks, being 'nice' was a dirty word. Despite every chick always complaining about wanting a 'nice' guy, they would in every instance, always prefer the dick-heads of the male population..
The world was not as it was supposed to be.
Now, I'll be the first to admit this, but I was REALLY thick!!
All my friends and family adjusted to the reality of what you were told to do, versus what you actually had to do to get by in life, really quickly... I think like most people, they rebelled in their teenage years and mastered the concept of 'idealism vs. realism' by the age of 16.
But even now, in my early thirties, I struggle with what I'm supposed to do to succeed, as opposed to what my heart tells me to do.
Anyway, back to me in my early twenties!
Fortunately I come from a supportive family, and my parents, after many many, many, raging arguments, finally backed off and allowed me to find my feet.
I spent a lot of time writing, and reading, and just absorbing information from every possible source.
If the world didn't make sense, and I did, then obviously there wasn't anything wrong with me, but something wrong with the world!!
So it was up to me to solve the problem!
After decades of intellectual intrigue, I finally thought 'to hell with the world!' I was unhappy living on the fringes of society. I didn't want to look down on people; I wanted to be one of them!
What good is all the knowledge in the world if you lack the knowledge to make yourself happy?
I wrote a screenplay about a character in this very dilemma: He finally realises his folly and then sets about trying make up for all the lost time.. just as he does, the world ends! It's a comedy. It needs a bit of re-writing, but I'll get around to it.
Anyway! As I was saying.
I became far less concerned with the world's problems, and trying to know something about everything, and focused more on my own personal happiness, and haven't looked back since!
I don't take everything so damn seriously anymore!
Being a carefree party animal is a MILLION times better than being a supercilious, altruistic Smart-Alec. Take it from someone that knows!
Don't get me wrong, I've always been a fun person (ask my long time friends; it sounds cheesey coming from me!), but now the gravity is gone. Everything is not as fatalistic as it once was; and my priorities have changed. I'm still inquisitive, but I'd much rather go out and immerse myself in a room full of strangers and chat to my peoples, than sit at home and ponder the reason why everything is so f**ked up in the world!
Fortunately this transition took place by the time I was in my mid-twenties, and I thought I was 'cured'. I loved people, and people seemed to love me to. You get what you give (not all the time, but in general).
But recently, as everyone's life evolves to the next step, getting married and starting families, I find myself once again on the fringe.
I mean I was never mainstream, but I'd gone from doing the opposite of what the crowd was doing, to at least moving in the same direction!
Back when I was in my early twenties, I discovered a book that perfectly described my 'condition'. Years later I finally bought it, but never read it. I didn't need to. Life was way too short for pontification.
The other day I picked it up and read a chapter.
I thought I'd made progress, that I'd changed, but all that happened was I lost the ego.
The book was written in the eighties and is called 'The Hamlet Syndrome: Overthinkers who Underachieve' by Adrienne Miller & Andrew Goldblatt. Here is an excerpt from the inside cover:
'Hamlets are bright, talented, would-be achievers who have put their idealism first, turning away from success- and from their own potentials … Torn between their dual desires for purity of heart and monetary success, these sensitive, well educated, middle-class young people avoid the conflict by taking unchallenging jobs … As the years go by they grow tired of making only enough money to survive, and become bitter – both toward themselves and toward society.'
Yikes! This book not only gives an insight into people in the 'early stages' but also the misanthropic sad-sacks they become!
Now you know how I'm a serial singleton? I mean I'm not stupid, I know why that's the case, but reading it in a book that describes other 'losers' in the game of love really makes you become aware of what team you're part of.. and it aint the champions!!
'Women look for men with earnings potential. Men look for women whose physical beauty sparks envy – read that esteem – in other men's eyes. We like to think we're more sophisticated than that, that we choose one another for nobler reasons, like love.
...What's that, Hamlet, you say you don't have much financial worth or potential? Then you damn well better look good, because otherwise you may come away from the sexual market place empty-handed.
..for most...Hamlets the prospects for finding a satisfying love relationship range from marginal to practically none … Consider the male Hamlet. He has minimal earnings potential, meaning he can't provide the material security the bulk of...women crave. Even worse, perhaps, he thinks differently. He questions the traditional family structure and may not want kids. He doesn't like the free enterprise system. He has offbeat notions about religion and government. He's honest to the point of rudeness. And fun as he may be to listen to sometimes, after a while his constant intellectualizing sounds like the bleating of a newly shorn sheep. Better to find a regular guy that knows how to have a good time.' (page 177)
Damn! My looks won't last forever, then what will I do??
Seriously though, it gets worse and more damning for the prospects of a 'Hamlet'!
EVERY chick I've ever met recoils away in an uneasy incredulity upon discovering the 'truth' behind my fanciful façade. I don't blame them either. Just like they can't blame guys for only chasing good looking chicks. It's just the way it is.
Fundamentally, although I like to think I'm unique in the universe, I am a type of person; I'm a 'Hamlet'.
Money doesn't motivate me in the slightest. I ponder life as much as I live it. I find more nobility in the pursuit of my 'dream' than in any satisfaction gained from conforming to the norms of society, i.e. chasing money and chasing women.
And whilst I'm happy being me, I'm unhappy with my place in the world. I'm unhappy with the fact that I must limit my enjoyment of the world because of a lack of money. I'm unhappy that no women will ever gamble her affections on me because I won't ever be able to make a life with her and provide for the future. I'm not yet bitter, but as the years pass, and success continues to elude me as it has done thus far, I can very easily see that bitterness some way on the horizon...
I'm almost unrecognisable from the man I was in my youth, but the journey isn't complete.
I need to change more.
- - -
Being a Hamlet is not someone I wish to be.
Small sketch (blown up) of Government Propaganda posters that will be dotted around the landscape of my film.
Day 28 (November 28th)
I didn't do Jack the day before, except feel pretty mashed, and then feel pretty sorry for myself, and then feel pretty elated at this awesome idea I had. Then I felt mashed again; the circle of life..
I lay in bed unable to sleep until 7am... It wasn't a good feeling. What's it called? You know, when you're trying really hard to sleep but the sleep never comes, and you just lie there, and you actually imagine sheep jumping over a fence and try counting them, but that doesn't work either.. Inception? Or is it Memento? ..It's definitely a Chris Nolan movie!
And to think, sleeping was one of the few things I was actually good at!
I slept for a few hours and then forced myself out of bed. The first victory of the day. After breakfast I procrastinated online for a while, before I was interrupted by a phone call from a friend. I won't go into details, but he's also a filmmaker; but he's a smart filmmaker ( a BIG difference), because unlike me, he hasn't put all his eggs in one basket. He's also a very successful business man..! The swine!
Anyways, he befriended a Hollywood script reader! Jackpot!
We talked for a while, and agreed that at the end of the day all the contacts in the world were useless unless you had the talent to go with it. That's what's going to propel us into making our dreams come true: Talent and tonnes and tonnes of hard work!
After that conversation I felt more energised (which is why you need to hang with like minded people; so you can encourage one another!!) and started writing detailed notes about my Caterpillar story. I could see it so clearly that I wanted to just abandon 'The Man That Killed The World' for a while and get cracking on this new idea instead! Also, as it was a short film, it wouldn't be such a struggle to make either. I could see the light at the end of the tunnel..
I was again interrupted, but this time by another friend that wanted to meet up for a drink. You'll notice that I can't really say 'no' to any offers of being social.. something to do with the need to get out of the house and interact with people I suppose. It does mean that I'm not as productive as I should be, but it also means I don't go insane or suffer from depression from being by myself all the time! A worthy trade off I think you'll agree.. besides, it's fun to hang with friends, and one should never feel guilty about indulging in fun!!!!
I got home and finished writing the story notes for my Caterpillar story. It will have to wait until I finish my current script though..
This script seems to be holding up my entire life!! That's why I need to finish it ASAP.. so why don't I ever spend any time writing it?
Hmmm. Maybe I'm using it as an excuse to prolong this 'lazy' state my life is in?? Something for all you character studying mo-fo's to think about..
Day 29 (November 29th)
Productive days usually follow unproductive days, which are then followed by, you guessed it, unproductive days! Again, the circle of life.
The previous day was quite productive by my, admittedly low, standards, so naturally this day was a bit of a rinse.
I cleaned my room.
Later I read a bit of 'Earth: Power of the Planet' based on the excellent BBC documentary series by the same name. Now, I'm a bit of an Environmental crusader, and a lot of what my stories are about is making positive contributions to the world.
I want to leave the world in better shape than I found it.. which is becoming increasingly difficult considering the downward trend that not only the planet is on, but also mankind. We're becoming more and more selfish and materialistic. 'Good will to all men' is something reserved for selling greeting cards and seasonal holidays.
Ironic isn't it. I want to save the world, but I can't even save myself.
Day 30 (November 30th)
If I had even an iota of self-discipline, this would have been the finishing line, and I'd be staring smugly at a script that has occupied more of my life than I'm willing to admit (even to you, the vast vacuous emptiness of cyberspace).
But it's not the destination, but the journey that matters most (or so other writer's would have you cannily believe!). It's taking me forever, but I'm enjoying my life in the process, so can't really complain (too much!).
It's 'Money' season on the BBC (a public broadcasting channel which we are FORCED to pay for!!), and they're running some damn good programmes that only serve to make your blood boil and fill you with rage at just how infuriatingly corrupt and UNJUST the world of money is.. This is made all the more frustrating by the fact that we, the 'peasant classes' (not how I'd describe us, but how we are seen in terms of the bigger picture), are trapped in a helpless paralysis to do anything about it!
I don't condone the recent riots in London this past summer. They were scum bags what did that. Nothing but the result of lazy parenting and people that think they deserve everything, but need to contribute nothing (to society). I was happy to see that people that got caught and convicted, had the book thrown at them.
But then when you watch all these programmes about the current situation of the world, and the financial crisis it faces, you realise who the real crooks are, and more importantly, just who your government serves.. and friend, it aint us.
In London, someone was jailed for stealing a bottle of water during the riots. Yet, to date, not one single banker has been jailed, and they squandered hundreds of BILLIONS of pounds.. all of which was paid for by taxpayers.
So if a rich man defrauds millions of pounds, nothing happens. Taxpayers foot the bill, and face decades of hardship to pay for his crimes. Meanwhile the system that allowed him to do that remains the same, and he continues to be rich.. while the vast majority of people grow ever poorer.
But if someone from the 'peasant' classes steals something as little as a bottle of water, then he faces hard time in jail.
I get it, we have to send out a message to the rest of society. Make an example of these crooks so no one dares repeat their actions ever again.
Peasants, keep working for longer & longer for less and less to pay off the debt burden (you can still squabble amongst yourselves by dividing yourselves into 'public vs. private' sector workers, even though really, you're all just workers!).
Rich people, take advantage of the cheap labour and falling prices, and become richer in the process! Don't worry about any revolts; we got yer back!
Please note, I don't support the rioters, or the bankers. It's just the injustice and scale of the crimes that astounds me.
There are ways out of this mess though. I saw an interview with the economist 'Steve Keen' on HARDtalk (another BBC programme.. well, you need to make the most of the license fee!), and he seemed to make sense. Too bad no one in power will take him seriously.
I spent most of the day writing about 'Money' and the world situation, mankind's love affair with the stuff, and my own personal theories, etc. Pages and pages of notes. You wouldn't have thought I'd have so much to say about something I have none of, but there ya go!
I was going to bore you by transferring those notes onto this blog.. but decided against it. One day I might be brave enough to write a story about it though.
On the filmmaking side, I watched a video on the Canon C300 camera, and despite it not being the revolutionary camera we all hoped for, it still looked pretty damn sweet. Someone buy/steal me one for Christmas! ;)
It's a SKETCH!! It's supposed to be rough! Jeez, everybody's a critic! ..Like everything else in my life, I'll finish it Later!!
Been a while..
Firstly, remember how in my last blog I was saying about how I'd been absent for a while and that all your enquiries about my well being must've got lost in transit 'cos I didn't get them? Well, I've been gone a lot longer this time round, and.. still nothing.
If I didn't get your zany sense of humour, I met be offended. Haha.. you kidders you.. Ha.. ha.
So what's been goin' down?
Only the small matter of Hollywood knocking on my door and asking to buy my script, even though I haven't written it yet!!!!
Nah, I wish. The truth is (boring amongst other things!!) I've been too busy living & enjoying life to bother with writing about it!! I really am having tonnes of fun!!
But it's also pretty bad (“Phew!” I hear you all cry! I know that's why you all really read this shizzle- to hear my tales of woe!!), because I'm supposed to be writing a script!! It's worse than bad, it's embarrassing really. After you read this you'll know why I've been languishing at the bottom of the proverbial barrel these past eleven odd years. I feel like crap about the whole thing.. caught in a downward spiral (when it comes to 'work' at least). You don't do jack, so you feel like crap, which causes you to do even less, which makes you feel even worse, which makes you do less still! And so on, and so forth until before you realise it, you become that guy. You know the one; that guy that always moans about the pathetic state of his life, but never does jackshit about it.
Well people, that guy was once like you, only better! He was once me!
Just HOW do you move through a decade, taking steps every day, and still end up in the same spot? Become a writer, and you're sure to find out! Better still, don't become a writer, become a reader, and let some other writer waste his life telling you about it!!
Check it out, the last time we spoke, I discussed in detail just how I managed to get side tracked from writing my script and extended my self-imposed deadline.. but I had a renewed verve about me. $hit was gonna change and then some.
Well, guess what? $hit did change, but not necessarily for the better!
I know you won't feel anything but frustration with me when I tell you, but believe me, my frustrations with myself are infinitely greater than anything you or anyone else could feel towards me. It's like I have two opposing tendencies, and they're both constantly at war with one another.. unfortunately my destructive or 'lazy' tendencies tend to win, even though I know they're wrecking my life.
I want to be 'productive' more than anything.. but I just keep indulging in procrastination! I'm like an obese person that keeps stuffing their face full of crap and then cries about wanting to be thin!
So what happened these past two weeks?
Fix yerself a cuppa ('tea' to all you non-English 'bloody foreigners' ..as you're known as in these parts), relax and let me tell you a tale.. Please note, I'll stretch this out over the next few days, so check in every day for the ongoing saga..
For all you keen character studying mo-fo's, notice the pattern of my life, multiply it by every week of every year and you might figure out pretty quickly where my 'lost' decade went..
Day 23 (November 23rd)
Bought another Groupon for yet MORE salsa classes. I just wanna learn it, and then put it to bed once and for all!! Spending MORE money I don't have!!
Figuring that some of you might actually enjoy reading my writing enough to want to share it with your friends, I went about adding a 'share' button to my website, in the (false) hope that it might boost my readership.. Yeah, well, we both know how that ended up. You swines!! Well, that didn't stop it taking me most of that day to get the damn button onto my website and not interfere with the Facebook button that was already there.. Time well spent? No.
Day 24 (November 24th)
Had a really traumatic dream about confronting some chick that wronged me earlier in the year (she managed to pull the wool over my eyes until she was long gone..); this bad omen would come home to roost days later. Read the introduction to the 'Inception' shooting script, which is basically an interview with Chris Nolan. Later I played Football with my friends and actually managed to win a game! Football is about the only exercise I do these days, which is pathetic, especially for a fitness enthusiast like myself.. But what can you do? Other things take priority.. like sorting out my damn life!!
Day 25 (November 25th)
That game of football took it's toll, and I overslept like a mother trucker. By the time I got back from the doctor's (again a lengthy wait for a 3 minute chat.. no fractures on the wrist. Thankfully!) and cooked and ate, it was late. It was a good friend's birthday, but as we met up after 10pm, our options in London were limited. That's what I hate about this city; the fact that you can't go from joint to joint sampling the scene unless you start doing that at 5pm and decide to stay at a particular place by 9pm!! One of the consequences of living in a country where the locals can't drink without getting drunk, and then abusive. If you wanna go to a joint with a dancefloor after 9pm, you gotta pay. And if you wanna keep checking out places, you gotta keep paying.
Broke and cheap as we are, we were only going to pay to get into one place, no matter how crap it was! ..So we went to 'TigerTiger'! Hahaha. Yes, if you're only going to one place in London, you definitely don't want it to be that! 'Sleazey 'n Cheesey' seem to be the words that come to mind.. But despite feeling like I was waaaaay too good for that place for most of the night, by the end of it, I'd met some pretty cool people and enjoyed myself for the crucial twenty minutes before closing time! (Just like in the movies, if it ends well, you tend to forgive the rest!) ..Birthday boy had a good time too.
Day 26 (November 26th)
So inevitably, I slept through most of the day, and when I woke up I had a text message on my phone (such a rarity, I just had to tell you about it!). I lazily ate a few scrambled eggs to go with my tower of toast, and slurped some tea in front of the TV.. then began a mad dash to shower and get ready! I was late, and then my train got cancelled! I finally met my friend for a hot chocolate, and chilled out some more before returning home for a quick bite and then headed out again!
Another night, another cheesey bar. What can I say, 'tis the season, and in the season, this is how we roll.
Now, I haven't frequented 'Loop' (another cheesey bar in London) for a LONG long time.. for some reason my friends all hate it, but my memories of the place are tinted with rose and jasmine, and other sweet girlie shizzle.. I've had some good times there, and it rarely disappoints. So when another long lost & newly single friend of mine felt like hitting the town, I knew EXACTLY where to go!
Sometimes it's better to just hold onto your rose tinted memories.. like the time you made four touchdowns in one game, when in actual fact it was really Al Bundy that did that.. on a sitcom! ..Yeah so long story short, I definitely won't be going back to 'Loop' any time soon! Fcuking $hithole!
Fortunately chatting to randoms at the bus stop rekindled my faith in (wo)mankind's ability to be friendly, funny, fair minded creatures.. Nightbus was missions as ever. Why couldn't my friend just buy a car & drive?
Day 27 (November 27th)
I won't go into the details about my relationship status (despite this whole blog being essentially about that fact!); I'm far too gentlemanly for that.. and I don't want to ruin my enigmatic mystique! Besides, there's not much to tell. But!! Yeah, there was this one chick that I pursued earlier in the year, but she chose another guy over me.. I didn't even know such a thing was possible, but it happened! (Life's funny, what can I say?) That wouldn't have been so bad, except she kinda strung me along until she eventually skipped the country & was reunited with Mr Loverman (Shabba!).
Now, I'm not one one to mourn the loss of a chick that doesn't wanna know me, but after that dream I had a few days prior to this, I'll admit to feeling a little hard done by.
..So I did what any guy would do in my position. I checked out her Facebook page!
Ouch. I was already feeling like crap from two successive nights of partying and I definitely didn't need to see that!
These two love birds stinking up the joint by declaring their sickeningly sweet love for one another all over Facebook! ..I mean Jeezus Jones! Get a room! Or just text each other!! I had thought about emailing her and telling her my 'feelings' & $hit.. but after seeing that, I just swallowed the pain & manned the hell up!!
..It did sting a bit though, but in retrospect I needed to see that too, just to kill any residual feelings of warmth.
There was also a silver lining, which made the whole excruciating experience worthwhile. I had an instantaneous vision of a short film! It hit me like a bolt of lightening, and I could see & hear all of it so vividly; the characters, the scenes, the music.. everything, all at once! & it was a beautiful!
A computer animated film about a caterpillar.. Cannot wait to make it!
Being an Artist is a blessing & a curse. We are infinitely more sensitive than regulaaar folk. Infinitely more. Without that sensitivity, we couldn't find inspiration. We either self destruct, or create something that could not have been made if it wasn't for the pain.. Thank God I'm an Artist.