Archive for July 4, 2012

Object Lesson

So, once again I’ve been away from my computer too much.

But all day rehearsals, tech and opening weekend will do that to a girl.

When I found myself passed out on my couch at 8:30 at night, I knew blogging was just not happening.

But now, with my return to the screen, I was greeted with the greatest nugget of “duh” I’ve seen in a long time.

Ladies and Gentlemen, drumroll please…

I present to you, The return of…

DUMBASS OF THE WEEK (WEEK, WEEK, WEEK)!!!

So, I have a friend who’s a playwright.

He’s also a producer, a critic and a general joy to be around.

I’ve done several of his plays and seen even more.

He’s neither rich nor famous, but he is well known in local theater circles.

His most recent play has just closed, and for SOME reason, a guy who originally auditioned for the show (and didn’t get in) contacted him on Twitter. Normally, this is not a big deal, but This Guy decided to do the ONE thing any experienced actor, director, acting teacher, agent, manager or really, anyone with a modicum of common sense would not do.

He trolled him, with the smell of sour grapes emanating from the keyboard. 

He opened the conversation by thanking him for NOT casting him in his show.

After which, he exhibited pretty much every poor decision you could make.

For example…

1) If you want to complain about not being cast, feel free… when you’re at home… with your friends. You never say that crap in front of the playwright, director, casting agent, booker. You just don’t do it.

Moreover, you don’t say this to the director, follow it up with a personal attack and tack on “Peace and Love” and expect anyone to believe you do this out of anything but spite.

2) There is a word that as an actor, you don’t EVER want attached to your name and resume: UNPROFESSIONAL.

It is a kiss of death. For some, it is unwarranted. Others, it’s steeped in rumor and conjecture and can’t really be proven. But then there are those who make such a big show of their unprofessionalism, who gain the reputation of a jerk, either through testimonials that follow them over the years or, if they do it all in one huge gesture of dumb. Putting your unprofessionalism in writing, for example, on a social network for all the world to see. Yeah, that’ll get UNPROFESSIONAL stamped right on you. And once there, it is HARD to wash the stink of that off.

3) There is a universal truth best expressed by Disney: It’s a Small World After All.

The world, whether we believe it or not, is rather small.

The theatre world? Even smaller.

The theatre world outside of Broadway? While densely populated, is infinitesimal.

This guy displayed a complete lack of understanding that word spreads. A lot. Really, really, freaking fast. Especially when you do something in a public forum, like for example, Twitter!! You came on to HIS page, insulted him, called him names, put down his work and then told him that HE can’t let it go? Really? You just told so many people how difficult it will be to work with you. And they will tell two friends, and so on, and so on…

But mostly…

4) This playwright you took to task has taken more hits than you will ever know. He has been through reviews and rejections and who knows what else and has kept going and kept writing through everything. He actually has the hide of a rhinoceros, and the heart of a lion. And while doling out your clever “bon mots”, you assumed that no one this playwright knew would take up the torch for him and spread the word of your behavior.

Oh, Peaches…

In the immortal words of Edward Norton, “You just f*cked with the wrong rhino.”

You see, he has lots of people very willing to go to bat for him.

In fact, your behavior was so heinous, it’s gone beyond his reach. People who have never met him and know nothing about him are now using your Twitter convo as the ultimate actor’s cautionary tale.

“When you don’t get a part in a show, don’t be THIS guy.”

Nice going, sunshine.

Now, casting directors will know just where to file your headshot.

In the circular file, under “D.”