The Therapy Journals of the Fat-Headed Klingon Woman

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

B Is For Bias, Bodies, and Boyfriends April 3, 2016

Hello, all!  Day 2 of the April challenges is here, so let’s get right into it. B is for Bias and Bodies. And Boyfriends, while we’re on the subject.

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I mentioned in my last post that I had auditioned for a show recently. Ardmore Little Theater is currently in rehearsals for “I Ought To Be In Pictures.” It is a play by Neil Simon with a cast of only three people: a man, a woman, and a late-teenage girl. Initially I went in thinking I didn’t really have a snowball’s chance of winning the adult female role. I really wanted to play the character because I felt like I really understood her. I had some concerns about some parts of the show, but overall I would have loved the chance to work through and around my issues and play the role.

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So I went in thinking I didn’t really have a chance, but at the time, I was thinking it was because there would be someone who was obviously better than I was, and they would get the part. Well, after the first night of auditions, I was kind of surprised. I had done what I thought was maybe my best audition ever and I thought Maybe I actually had a shot. The second night of auditions, when I discovered we were going to be reading the same scene again, I asked one of my friends if I should try to do it exactly the same as I had the night before or do it differently, and she said to do it differently. So as I watched everyone else read, I thought, “How can I be different from everyone else? How can I do it better than last night?” And I came up with the idea to take it in the opposite direction emotionally and take a completely different tone.  After the reading, I felt like it had been a good choice. Nobody else had gone that direction but me, at least not that I could remember. There was one lady who I felt was pretty good, but I felt like I showed more realistic emotion. Or something. I am not even sure now. I think I just generally thought I was better. BUT. She had one huge advantage. She was much thinner.

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When it came to the guys, two of them were similar but seemed pretty good to me, and the third just seemed a little bland and emotionless. Not very realistic. And there again he was the thinnest of the three. So guess who got cast? The two thin people, which really should not have surprised me, and perhaps really didn’t, because at one point they were onstage together and I thought, “I’m looking at the cast of this show right now.”

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Anyway. One of the things about theater is that the result of an audition is never truly in our hands. We might think we are the best choice, but it is all about the director’s vision and only he or she knows what that is. But in this case, I felt like the primary deciding factor was appearances. That may or not have been entirely the case, but that was how I took it. How I felt. And it did something to me. Well, several things, but mostly it reminded me of the fact of appearance bias in theater and every other field and facet of the world. No one is immune to it.

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But on this occasion, the reminder of that bias was almost crushing. I felt very angry that day. I thought I could see very clearly that large people are only allowed to be characters in a few specific situations: they are poor, they are Southern, they are stupid, or they are morally deficient. I tried to think, all day when I was at work after the cast was posted, of specific examples both from our local theater and from professional theater and in TV and movies, that supported my theory:  extra large actors and the roles they play.

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The problem is that theater is the very definition of unreality. See, in the real world, fat and unattractive people get married, have sex, and get divorced. In the world of theatre, nobody wants to see that up on stage, larger than life in spotlights in a play about love and sex. It is not fair but it is reality. No sense whining about it when it’s what we sign up for.

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Anyway, the long and short of it was that it made me reconsider the possibility of ever playing a big role, or one I really wanted. I thought I didn’t want to do it if I was up against that bias. I thought I didn’t even want to play roles I might be perfect for, if I had to play them at the size I am now. I started thinking about dislike for self and downright self-hatred and how it spills over onto others and I wondered where my compassion went. (I also realized it is getting harder for me to look people in the eyes at work, but I am not sure there is a connection there.)

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So. It was a rough couple of days. I identified a part I want in one of the shows for next season, but immediately began wondering if I were good enough. And then I wanted to back out because I want to play the part but I don’t want to play her at this size. And then I thought, well why not? If someone’s going to play her, it might as well be me.

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This entry is getting too long, but I wanted to throw in the topic of boyfriends and how it seems like I always want one, but the only guys I have loved, liked, seriously crushed on, or considered crushing on, have all had significant mental issues, by which I mean depression or bipolar or some variation on that theme. I wonder whether I am drawn to these people or I draw them to me. My counselor the other day said something I have known for years, but because of the current climate of my emotions toward myself and my size and all, it was quite depressing to be reminded of:  you have to love yourself before you can get anyone else to love you. And in the mental headspace I am in right now, all I could think was “Boy, am I screwed!”

Without further ado, today’s B Poem:

Bodies

beautiful or not,

Seen through our own eyes.

what is

or what isn’t

rejoice or cry,

but  always judge.

Always criticize.

Bodies

float

or waltz

or waddle

across a stage

or a screen

and into our imagination

catalogued

by categories of value

based on appearances

Bias is like air

it surrounds and touches,

it is inside and outside

and no matter

what the inside says…

the outside makes the decisions

for all of us

DD

4/3/16

2:04am

 

Until next time,

D.

 

 

A is for Actors April 1, 2016

Hello, all!

Welcome to April, where blogging-wise I am in over my head.

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One of my Facebook friends posted about NaPoWriMo and a few others talked about the Blogging A-Z challenge, and I thought I would be the classic Overachiever and combine them. So I am going to try to blog every day in April except Sundays, AND write a poem, AND stick to a theme that follows the alphabet. Heaven help me.

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So, Day 1.  A is for actors.

Tonight I went to a local high school and watched their performance of The Sound of Music. A couple of my theater friends went with me and it was a nice evening.

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I mainly went for the sake of one kiddo- he was one of my actors when I stage-managed Grease in 2014 and I have watched him in his HS production of it as well. He played the character of Max tonight, and I thought he was wonderful, a joy to watch every time he is onstage. I can’t wait to see what his future holds.

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I wanted to talk about the theater experience and how we learn and grow as actors and how we get better at every audition, hopefully. Recently I auditioned for our local theater’s production of “I Ought To Be In Pictures” and wasn’t cast. I was pretty down about it, but I realized I had given the best audition I had ever done, and it was obvious I am learning and getting better, so I was happy about that. Appearance Bias in theater is another A-word that has been on my mind lately, but that is another post.

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So. In of  honor of my favorite Greaser, and myself, here is my first poem of the month, and it is also titled with an A-word.

Actor In Training

Actor in training,
Move across the stage.
Show us who you’re playing,
Their joy
Sorrow
Rage.

Actor in training
Move us with your song.
Tell another’s story
Make us sing along.

Actor in training
Give the boards your all.
The show goes on
The lights don’t dim
Until the curtain falls.

DD
4/1/16
9:26am

Until next time,

D

 

 

 

 

Finally, A “Z” Post and What’s New May 19, 2014

Filed under: A-Z,Ambitions,Poetry and Fiction — DDKlingonGirl @ 9:35 am
Tags: , , ,

Hello all.  I have to say I really hate that I bombed out on the A-Z challenge.  It was my first one to really attempt, and I kind of blew it.  But hey, life goes on.  I knew from the beginning that the Z post I wanted to do had to do with that handy little tool that used to be part of WordPress.  It was down at the bottom of the ‘new post’ screen:  Powered By…..Except I can’t remember the word, but I know it started with a Z.  (I want to say it was Zapata, but I’m not sure that’s right.)  A while back, when you went to work on a post, this handy little program would automatically link keywords for you, and give you suggested images and links to related material to choose from.   I always saved that for the end of the post.  It was so nifty and now it seems to be gone.

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So yeah.  That was what my final post was going to be about.  How I miss the program that did half the work for you when it came to links, images, and related materials.

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What’s new is that I am going to try, repeat: try, to work on submitting poetry to some competitions and anthologies.  I have just barely gotten started.  I submitted a few in February and a few last week. I know, that’s a pitiful consistency record.  The new goal is to perhaps make a chapbook and submit it to a few contests and if nothing happens with those, then just self-publish.  But my goodness, the instructions look… shall we say, daunting?  There are so many different ways to make them, and bind them, and I would really like mine to be nicer than just stapled down the middle, but I’m not sure I can figure out the instructions for making them fancy.  It would require purchasing an AWL, let’s just put it that way.  Oh, and the other big negative?  For some contests, anything I’ve posted here is ineligible for submission.  The contests are for previously unpublished material, and it’s considered published if it is posted online anywhere.  Which really bites because a couple of the pieces I have posted here, I did so because I considered them among my best.  Ah, well.  We roll on, and I will just have to create something new and even better.

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So, short post today, but it serves as my final entry in the A to Z Challenge and my transition into what’s coming up.  Also stay tuned for more news about what’s going on for me in the world of my beloved community theatre, ALT.

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Until next time,

D.

 

 

D Is For… Dark. REALLY Dark. April 4, 2014

Filed under: A-Z,Poetry and Fiction — DDKlingonGirl @ 11:03 am
Tags: , , ,

Hello all.  I am really busy today.  My employer is packing up and moving offices.  We are getting a lot of the packing done today and plan to actually move on Monday.  I started to call this post ‘D is For Deconstruction’ and ramble on about the move and the transition and all, but in the end, that topic is really not all that entertaining.  On the other hand, currently it’s just a little bit crazy around here, which is why I bring you the following A t0 Z Challenge post for the letter D.  Short and sweet.

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But first some backstory.  I am a poet.  As you can see at the top of the screen, there is a tab that says My Poetry and Fiction.  Unfortunately I haven’t posted any fiction there, no short stories or anything like that, although my Cruise Report is a really entertaining read if I do say so myself.  But I digress.  I am a poet.  I have written poetry since about 8th or 9th grade.  Writing poetry, like most creative endeavors, is somewhat cathartic for me, healing, cleansing, purging, etc.  I have been through a few dark periods in my life, and my poetry usually reflects that.  Also, I have a tendency to have mood swings that would give a person whiplash.  I won’t go so far as to say I have Bipolar Disorder, but I have felt that way at times, and many people have suggested to me that possibility.  So here is a very brief verse I wrote years ago, sometime when I was really struggling with the moody.

 

—”Suicide Note”—

Deep in a Dank, Dark, Dreary, and Damnable mood,

Depression & Despair Dive Deftly to the Depths of the soul.

Daylight Dawns. Depression does not Dwindle.

Despair Deems Death the Decisive and Definitive cure.

7-4-96—— 7:00 pm

 

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Disclaimer:  Not all my poetry is dark and brooding.  Some of it is, but much of it is joyous and/or sensual.  If you go check out that tab, you may think it’s good, you may think it’s crap, you may or may not think it fits your definition of poetry, but it’s mine and I enjoy it.  And further disclaimer:  I am now eons away from whatever crappy day made me write the above poem, so don’t anybody go turning me in to the Suicide Hotline.  Thanks!

Until next time,

D.

 

Another New Experience- Open Mic Night! October 24, 2013

Hello all!  Last night I participated in an Open Mic Night in conjunction with the Oklahoma Arts Conference that took place here this week.  The evening was completely enjoyable, and I was very glad to see old friends, meet new people, and make important connections.   I thought I would highlight the four poems I read last night in a single post.  All of these are, or are about to be, on my Poetry and Fiction page also.  Enjoy!

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Maybe It’s Monday

When you can’t get a kid to get off the bed,

when you can’t find a shoe or a sock,

when the windshield is frosted and the steering is dead,

and the bread is as hard as a rock,

when the cereal’s gone and the milk’s gone too,

when the cat leaves a mess on the floor,

when it’s 8:25 and it’s time to be there

and the kids are just now out the door,

and friends need some money and cars need gas

and you’re sleepy and tired off your..

well, you know.

Odds are there’s one simple reason for this,

why everything turns out this way.

It may be your luck or it may just be fate,

but more likely, maybe it’s MONDAY!!

DD

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Bonsai Life

Growing for years,

Beginning to be established.

Life is the Ultimate Gardener.

I am Cut Down and Brutalized.

I am nothing but a Stump.

But after successive Springs

gradually New Shoots grow.

New leaves to disguise

The Scars.

A little guidance; I am Wired.

And soon

I am smaller.

A more compact version

of what I was.

But more deliberately shaped

and trained.

I am an Art Form.

DB

8-11-10   10:35 a.m.

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Road Trip

Roaming through the countryside,

Acres of parched fields,

Or lush green crops proudly thriving,

Somebody’s sweat and blood and tears.

The world is quiet

Until history begins to speak to you.

For everywhere you look,

The past comes alive.

From the gnarled tree-branch fence posts,

Standing faithfully

Since some sturdy old farmer put them there,

To the gray, abandoned shacks

Along the way,

Each with its peekaboo roof and sagging porch

Ever so slowly disintegrating

With the passage of time.

Once someone’s pride and joy,

Perhaps the culmination of their dreams.

Rows of ancient cars and trucks,

Fine old machines from an era gone by,

Where young men on back roads tested their fates

And young ladies in back seats determined theirs,

Now reduced to rusted out shells.

The world as it once was

Stirs, gives itself a shake,

And comes forward to greet you.

DD  8-9-02  6:10 pm

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Perspectives

Under a table hides a young boy,

battered and beaten a broken toy.

Across the room a mama cries,

the hurting, the hitting, the pain in her eyes.

Between the two survives a bond

for love and forgiveness to build upon.

Around them both the empty walls

the echoing silence, the desolate halls.

Beside the chair where the mama weeps,

a bottle of medicine that helps her sleep.

Nights stretch endless when she can’t NOT think.

In desperation she picks up a drink.

And in the morning her little son begs

for biscuits and gravy or bacon and eggs.

Behind the fridge door there’s nothing he wants.

His hungry eyes taunt her, his wailing voice haunts

Until she can’t take it, endurance worn thin,

her hand lands the blows again and again.

He runs for a safe place. She drops into a chair.

Again her heart shatters for the pain they both bear.

Desperate to hold him, she calls to her boy

hiding under the table, like a broken toy.

But he follows her voice and she clasps his small form

and clings to her child, the lifeline in a storm.

Through tears she says she’s sorry and that she loves him so.

He snuggles closer to her and says, “Mommy, I know.”

DD: 08/23/11 9:07am

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And this is one I wrote yesterday but didn’t get to read, which I wrote for all the new friends I have met in the last few months since the beginning of my involvement with Ardmore Little Theatre.

Theater People

Theater People are Friendly People.

Because you never know- that girl you talk to, while standing in line to buy paint for the next big monster set designed by possibly masochistic crazy men…might just be the next big star.

And speaking of Monster Sets-

Theater People are Achy People.

Entire weekends spent climbing ladders, bracing studs, steadying walls, standing bent double with a drill in hand, and painting all day on your knees…is as good a workout as any you can get from a trainer!

Theater People are Hurried People.

Because that monster set, with all its painting and leveling, wiring and plum-lining, has to go from bare stage to showplace in three weeks, and back to bare stage in one night!  And lines must be learned, and blocking changed, and costumes discussed and it all must happen immediately if not sooner!

And speaking of too many things to do-

Theater People are Drowsy People.

After working all day at “real” jobs like managers, teachers, and secretaries, Theater People show up to devote hours to rehearsals, construction, learning lines, and staying up all night texting because they just like each other that much.

And speaking of liking each other-

Theater People are Flirty People-

Working closely, often too closely, with Big Egos, Applause Hounds, Spotlight Whores, and sometimes the quiet but surprisingly passionate character who observes from the sidelines, what starts in the theater…doesn’t always STAY in the theater!

And speaking of Staying in the Theater-

Theater People are Devoted People.

Because despite being friendly and hurried and achy and drowsy and flirty, there is always drama and comedy, and tension and dissention, but stage bios are 30 years long, friendships are measured in decades, and hugs are distributed freely, because Theater People…. Are A Family!

DD  10/22/2013  10:20 AM

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Thanks for reading!  Until next time,

D.

 

I’ve Recently Been Inspired… August 6, 2013

Hello all.  If you’ve been reading here for quite a while, or if you know me in real life at all, you know I write a lot of things:  this blog, organizational and packing lists, dorky Facebook posts.  But you should also know that I write poems.  Or what I consider poems, anyway.  They may not fit some people’s definition.  But anyway.  I have posted a lot of my old stuff under the Poetry and Fiction tab at the top of this page, but sometimes I post individual entries that have a new poem in them as well.

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So I haven’t written anything in a while, but I’ve recently been inspired again.  I just wrote the poem you’re about to read a few minutes ago, and as it’s the first thing I’ve really written in quite some time, I wanted to give it center stage on its own before I added it to the Poetry page.  Here you go:

“Actor”

Actor, I see your face.

As hard as you try,

your skills aren’t sharp enough

to hide your pain.

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I see you,

a man spread so paper thin

we can see sunlight through you.

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I know a hint of your story,

but nowhere near the whole.

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I know the things you don’t say,

that the forces you struggle and fight against

often swallow you alive.

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And it takes all your considerable strength

to climb out again.

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In some ways,

I have been there.

How I wish I could be the one

to reach a hand down to you

And pull you up into the light.

DD

8-6-13

1:30 PM

 

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Until next time,

D.

 

 

More Updates Here July 16, 2013

Filed under: Poetry and Fiction,Whatever — DDKlingonGirl @ 3:35 pm

Hello all.  Just wanted to let you know that I have changed up the Poetry and Fiction tab.  Instead of each new group of poems I have posted appearing as a long comment to the original post, the poetry now appears as a long post, to which it is now much easier to make comments.  If you enjoy poetry, please feel free to check it out.  Keep in mind, it may not all be your cup of tea, and some of it is very dark, depressing, and dramatic.  On the other hand, much of it is joyous and celebratory.  Whether you enjoy it or just pass it by, thanks for visiting!

Until next time,

D.

 

 
The Therapy Journals of the Fat-Headed Klingon Woman

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

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If I am a princess in rags and tatters, I can be a princess inside. If would be easy to be a princess if I were dressed in a cloth of gold, but it is a great deal more of a triumph to be one all the time when no one knows it. -Frances Hodgson Burnett

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Our Little Geekling

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Translations of Poetry from Galician and Spanish into English

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