A tale of two Garths. Chapter 47. “ROCK FORMATION!”

Posted in Uncategorized on August 9, 2011 by mrsdiagnosed

Desert. As far as the eye could see, a sort of orange-red sand oasis. Possibly one of the most beautiful, and at the same time, ominous places I’ve been. This would not be a good place to run out of gas, I thought to myself from the penalty box. I was just mesmerized at the beauty before me. The world was so beautiful and I hadn’t so much as seen even a quarter of it. Hell, I hadn’t even seen a quarter of a quarter of it. Or even a quarter, of a quarter, of a quarter of it. I had a lot to catch up on. There I was, living in my tiny apartment in Sherman Oaks with Garth and the whole world was just passing me by. Things needed to change.

During all my soul searching and daydreaming, I would hear the words “rock formation!” being yelled out from one of my three companions. And sure enough I would look to either side and see huge rocks built by nature scattering the landscape.

We traveled on. The four of us trying desperately to keep each other as well as ourselves entertained for the two hour and twenty-two minute drive to Page Arizona.

“Rock formation,” Garth yelled.

“Rock formation,” Adam shouted a couple minutes later. Time passed. And passed.

“RF,” Jonathon yelled from the front seat. Really? We had already been reduced to this, using initials instead of the whole word. This was going to be a very long day.

“RF on the right,” Adam added as we all turned our heads to the right to soak in what I would call a mini rock formation.

“Does that even count?” I asked from the penalty box. Yes, even though I had done nothing to earn it, I was still in the penalty box. And just as we were all about to get goofy from being stuck in the car for what seemed like an eternity something wonderful happened. We entered the city of Page.

“Ah.” I sighed as I got out of the car and stretched my entire body to limits I didn’t even know existed. My muscles were still aching from the hike through Zion earlier that morning.

“We probably should load up on food while we’re here,” Garth suggested. We were in one of the few border towns of the Navajo Nation and knew that once we got inside the Nation the pickings were going to become very slim. Once we were done feeding the gas tank we drove to the local supermarket. That is the moment when my heart completely broke in half.

“What are they doing?” I asked Garth as I watched my grandfather’s people lying on the lawn in front of the store.

“They just got paid.” I looked on and could see one or two of the men swaying to and fro as they sat in the upright position. Others were just lying there, and some were passed out completely.

“They come here to cash their checks and they buy booze with it,” Garth continued. “The Nation is dry so they have to come into Page to drink.” I had heard the stories of the Navajo. I knew about the problems with alcohol. I knew that sometimes in the winter people would get drunk in their trailers out in the middle of nowhere and wander out to the warm road and lie down on it for warmth. Many a good Navajo died this way being run over and hit by cars.  Something the Nation was trying its best to prevent. But this was Page. The Nation and its Council had no power here.

Once we got our food and pulled back out of the parking lot I saw them again so clear. Their faces, the lines of time and over exposure to the sun had carved these men into works of art. Very, very drunk art. I tried my best not to cry as we pulled away. But deep down in my heart I knew that they would always struggle. They most  likely would always cash their checks in the exact same supermarket. And chances are an older me would once again see them lying in the exact same spot.

As we drove through the Nation I looked out over the desolation of the place. I had been through the nation before, but not from this direction. It really seemed to be a wasteland. I felt anger. Anger that the United States Government thought they deserved to have the power to put my people on a land this barren. I wanted to yell. I wanted to fight. I wanted to…

“Oh no.”

“What?” I asked Garth, as I was about to fill out the application to study Indian Law and come to live with my people.

“We need to go back to Page.”

“Nooooo way,” Adam responded. And he was more or less speaking for all of us. The Nation itself is roughly 27,425 square miles and we were smack dab in the middle of those 27,425 square miles.

“Have you lost your mind?” I asked.

“You guys, by the time we get off the Rez we will be back in Utah. They stop selling booze in Utah at 6 pm. We won’t make it. We have to go back to get alcohol!” Now it had been a really long day already and we were all very tired. So of course we turned around and went back to Page. Why wouldn’t we?

Of course we pulled into the parking lot of the exact same supermarket. Luckily, not as many of the men were left on the lawn. But now I got to worry about how they were going to get home instead.  My brain is going to explode!  We piled out of the car, stretched once again, and went back into the store. But this time we went for booze.

“We’re going to need a cooler,” Jonathon pointed out. Of course we would need a cooler. We’re not stupid. Well at least I wasn’t.

“How about this one?” I asked pointing to a nice blue and white Igloo cooler.

“No I don’t want to spend that much on a cooler,” Garth told me. “That’s the one right there. Yep, that’s the cooler we need,” he said pointing to what looked like a Styrofoam cup. Only larger and more square. On a suck level of 1 – 10, this cooler went to 11.

“That’s not going to be very sturdy,” I said.

“Stacy, it only has to last us a couple of days,” he said to me patiently, but overly so. The way you talk to a child. So fucking cheap, I thought. There were four of us and we couldn’t even spring for a decent cooler. FINE!

With booze in hand we drove back onto the nation. As we got to the point where we turned around the first time we decided that we should probably light up one of the 3 remaining joints we had left. I’m sure the Navajo people would have wanted it that way. Come to find out much, much later that the Nation is not really open to the general public. You see it’s pretty much, no…it’s exactly Native American jurisdiction. That means that they don’t have to tolerate four stupid, stoned white people if they don’t want to. While it seldom happens, I’ve heard that there have been people who have been escorted to the Navajo Nation’s boundary and told not to come back. Now, I know I possess the ¼ amount of blood required by law to be a card-carrying member of the Navajo Nation. But I can tell you with all certainty that my accomplices did not. Luckily we didn’t run into any problems. Let’s just do a sum of all the laws we would be breaking, shall we? If you put them all together we would have some non-Navajos smoking pot on private property while transporting illegal alcohol across said private property, with a trunk load of enough drugs to fund a Mexican drug cartel for at least a week. We were possibly the dumbest people on the planet earth. Luckily the Nation is so spread out we didn’t come across another car for many, many miles and it wasn’t the po po. Oh thank you, Great Spirit.

And just as the sun was staring to go down I heard someone yell “ROCK FORMATION!” We had finally made it to Monument Valley.

“Now THAT’S a rock formation!” was all I could say as I stared into the great unknown.

To be continued…

Advertisements

A tale of two Garths. Chapter 46. Those frogs are NOT green!

Posted in Uncategorized on June 25, 2011 by mrsdiagnosed

“I’ll take the corned beef hash and eggs. Eggs over medium. With sourdough toast, a large orange juice, a side of bacon, and a large cup of coffee with cream please,” I told the old, weathered waitress in the casino restaurant. During Garth’s and my relationship I had noticed a gradual change in myself. My once rock hard abs were starting to turn a little mushy, and my ass had spread a bit. Who is this size 9 woman I’ve become? I asked myself while listening to the sweet sound of slot machines beckoning me to drop in just one quarter. You will not get my quarters! You won’t, you evil demons from the land of change.

“You guys missed out on an AWESOME night last night!” Adam told Garth and I as I waited patiently for the meal I knew I shouldn’t be ingesting.

“Why? What happened?” Garth asked.

“Dude, we got hammered on Goldschlager and danced to Super Freak with some 70 year old chicks,” Jonathon reported.

“It was the best night EVER!” Adam told us with a giant grin plastered on his face. If I hadn’t woken up to Adam tripping and falling over our luggage in the wee hours of the morning drunk off his ass, I think I would have questioned if they had gone home with the over the hill hussies.

 

But my morbid curiosity was soon derailed when our waitress returned with my big boy breakfast. And of course I felt guilty about eating it the whole drive to Zion National Park (with a stop off for shoes of course). It wasn’t that I was guilty about eating. It was that I was guilty about eating crap. I had worked very hard to get the body I needed for auditions and now I was letting it all slip away. And it wasn’t just my body. Some people pick career over love. In this case, I wish I had been one of those people. But hindsight is 20/20 right? And boy was my hind becoming a sight.

 

As we pulled into Zion my breath was literally sucked out of my body. I was in awe.  Have you ever been to a place that made you feel really small and insignificant in the whole scheme of things? Well if you haven’t, go to Zion. Driving through the park was overwhelming. Staring at the Towers of the Virgin made me feel like a speck. In all our lives we have so much going on and it’s all about us. But when you stand in a place like this you realize the earth doesn’t really care. The daily grind, the things we feel are SO important, that next party, that next audition, just don’t matter. We will come and go, but Mother Nature is the one with the real power. It’s very humbling. Line by line carved by wind, water and shifting earth ran through the walls of the canyon. Each line telling it’s own story of years gone by. I stood there at the bottom of one of the canyons realizing it took so much history, and so much time just to get to MY line. And it wouldn’t stop there. Someone in the future will be looking at my line probably wondering the exact same thing. First they’ll look up and see the line from Zion’s first settlers that were there 12,000 years ago. Settlers who tracked mammoth, giant sloth, and camel across southern Utah. Then they will see the line belonging to the Virgin Anasazi, who were farmers. Then onto the Paiute people. And then the line from the 1860’s belonging to the Mormons. Then there were the flash floods and fires that destroyed towns and burned crops. And lastly there was my line. Our line. Where four stoners stood gazing at the heavens until one called out, “Lets climb this bitch!” And climb we did. Three miles up through a trek known as Emerald Pools. That sounds so nice doesn’t it?

 

The hike started off nice enough. On the lower trail of the hike one could see young children, baby strollers and people in wheelchairs. This is going to be so easy. I thought to myself. How in the hell am I supposed to work off all that damned corn beef and hash this way? Wait… was I just lapped by a granny in a hover round? Oh I don’t think so!

We followed the Lower Trail to the Lower Emerald Pool, which is located at the base of a cliff. Two small streams spread across the cliff face and trickle into the pools. The trail leads behind the falling water. The view was astonishing really. As we passed the Lower Emerald Pool there were signs posted for all humans to NOT touch the water in the pools. That’s right. No touchy, touchy. So we hiked and swerved and curved and eventually lapped the hover rounds and strollers as we climbed a steep route to connect with the Middle Trail. So long suckers! But before I started really patting myself on the back I probably should have taken into account the steep trail that continues up the canyon up to the Upper Pool. The Upper Pool is larger, with a high waterfall coming into it from a towering cliff. That’s where I started huffing and puffing and getting passed by the chubbier members of our group. What the fuck? Have I really gotten THAT out of shape? This is ridiculous! And that’s when I turned on…THE TERMINATOR! I started pumping my arms and legs like some spasmodic Duracell Bunny gone haywire. Must beat them to the top! Must beat them to the top!  *Huff. Puff. Huff. Puff. Wheeze. Grab the side of a cliff* I think I’m going to pass out. But sure enough, as soon as I sat my corn beef-eating ass down the super freaks were passing me with smiles in their faces.

“How you doing Stace?” Jonathon asked, passing me without so much as a whimper with Adam trailing right behind him.

“You don’t look so good. Do you need some water?” Adam asked me while handing me his bottle.

“I’m fine! I have my own water thank you very much!” I snapped.

“Well we’re going to go on ahead. We’ll meet you at the top.” And they both marched off full of left over Goldschlager, and apparently some of the Chutzpa that rubbed off on them from the septuagenarians the night before.

 

Once I had finally reached the top of the mountain I was exhausted. I…just….water…. There I was surrounded by pools of water and Zion Nation Park wouldn’t let me touch any of it. All I wanted was to rub some nice cool water on my hands and on the back of my neck but I was surrounded by a handful of other tourists I didn’t know, and could tell by looking at some of them that they just couldn’t wait to report someone like me to the Ranger office. So I sat until my internal temperature eventually went back to normal. Meanwhile the guys were taking pictures and finding caves to pee in. By the time I came back around to enjoy the view I had come to the same conclusion as I had before I took on the mountain. I was truly just a very small speck. A very small speck with a camera. It wasn’t great, but it was going to have to do. So we all took pictures of each other, the scenery, and I personally took pictures of a bunch of frogs. Maybe it was the weed, maybe it was the exhaustion, but I swear these frogs were a pinkish silver color. I have tried to look them up for you here on the web to show you a picture but alas, I can’t find anything to compare to it. But I don’t care what anyone says, or anyone thinks, those damn frogs were NOT green.

 

It took us a little time to get back down the mountain but the whole day was so worth it. We all climbed back into the Cadillac and made our way out of the park when I noticed one glaring fact. No matter what we were doing, or where we were driving, I always got the shitty seat.

“Hey! Why do I always have to sit behind the driver? I demand a new seat. We have driven from California to Utah and you all have rotated seats yet here I am behind the driver. I feel like I’m in the penalty box. Did I do something bad?” This just made my companions laugh. And that’s when we decided that the seat behind the driver would officially be known as “The Penalty Box.” If you pissed any one of us off, you went into the box. If you’re cranky? Get in the Box. If you passed gas, you and your unwelcome ass had a one-way ticket to the Box. So we had a deal and we had all agreed on it. And as we drove on through Zion I looked out the window at the view. I didn’t really see all that much because you see…once again, I was in the Box.

To be continued…

 

A tale of two Garths. Chapter 45. SPINNNNNN….. LOSER.

Posted in Uncategorized on June 13, 2011 by mrsdiagnosed

“Stacy, I need you to go check the women’s restroom,” the new manager told me. First day on the job and already on a power trip. Fine…bathroom duty it is. I dragged my butt into the bathroom to check it for the trash I already knew wasn’t going to be there. This wasn’t McDonalds. This was a nice restaurant. People knew how to not pee on the seats, and how to put their paper towels in the trash.

“Stacy, I need you to go check the women’s restroom,” the manager asked me again an hour later. I stood there for a second looking around at all my coworkers and noticed one glaring fact. No one else had been asked to go into the land of pee to search for non-existent things to pick up. *Sigh* Whatever. So one more time I went to the clean bathroom and inspected it’s cleanliness. But this time I decided to freshen up my make up and use the payphone to check my voice mails. Nothing. That’s a bummer.

“Stacy, I need you to go check the women’s restroom.” And THAT was all she wrote.

“Charles.”

“Yes.” “Take a look around you. Aside from the two new guys, all the servers are women.”

“Yes…”

“And yet you keep asking me to check the restrooms.”

“No, I’m just telling you to do your job,” Charles replied with a condescending smirk.

“Charles,” I repeated.

“Yes,” he said, with a roll of his eyes.

“Do you know whose job this was before you took it?”

“No.” The impatience and hostility were replaced by confusion.

“Mine. The only reason you have this job is because I turned it down.” *Snickers from my fellow wait staff*

“That’s not true,” he said in whiny voice.

“Oh it’s true. Go ask Luis.” And that’s when Charles looked at me with daggers in his eyes like I had just made up some sort of managerial conspiracy theory.

“I WILL go ask Luis,” he said.

“Well then do it!” I felt like a little kid fighting with their sibling. “I’m telling mom!” And that’s when Charles ran off towards the office in a huff.

“I think someone needs a time out,” I said out loud to no one in particular.

I went home later that night to find my boyfriend with a picture taken off the wall, balanced on his lap, and a gigantic pile of cocaine strewn all over it. Credit card in one hand chopping it up, and a rolled up dollar bill in the other.

“Who are you, Manuel Noriega?” *SNIIIIIIIIIiIFF*

“What?’

“Dude! That’s a LOT of coke,” I said, as I stood glued to the spot I was standing in.

“People have put in orders this year,” he said.

“So you’re telling me we are going to be driving that much blow to Colorado?”

“Yes.” We are going to end up in jail I just know it. It was Pig Roast time again and apparently we were drug mules. Well, I was a drug mule. He was just an ass. So we did what we had done in the past. We put copious amounts of illegal substances in hair, lotion, and food products. Leaving ourselves exactly 6 joints for the drive. Theory being, we could just eat the joints if we got pulled over. I’m sure the cop wouldn’t notice us trying to chew up dry weed with marijuana-laced grins on our faces.

The next morning bright and early, say…2:00 p.m., Garth’s high school friend Jonathon showed up at our apartment in a Cadillac Seville. We now had our sweet new rental car. Garth’s brother was riding shotgun, and we began our yearly pilgrimage to the holy land. A pilgrimage that took us straight through Las Vegas. Like a Siren song, Vegas always tried to suck us in, but we couldn’t be swayed. Vegas will not tempt me. Vegas will not tempt me. Vegas will not tempt me. But sure enough, just as soon as we started to see the gorgeous neon in the distance, Garth spoke up. “I just realized I forgot all of my shoes at home.”

“ALL of your shoes?” I asked.

“Well all except for these,” he said as he showed me his beat up flip-flops.

“We’re going to have to stop and buy new shoes if we want to go hiking.” We had our whole trip mapped out. We had planned to see Mexican Hat, hike in Zion, and spend some time on the Navajo Nation. But some of this wouldn’t happen if my boyfriend didn’t get his hands on some real shoes.

“We could stop in Vegas. I’m sure they have tons of places to buy shoes there,” Adam suggested.

“No way! We can NOT stop in Vegas. We have a trunk full of coke. If we stop in Vegas, we will never leave Vegas,” I pointed out. Jonathon than agreed with me. We were driving on. It was getting later and later and we wanted to hike Zion the next day.

“We should probably start looking for a place to stay,” Jonathon suggested. We may have mapped out our route, but we didn’t plan where we would stay or make any hotel reservations for that matter.

“Where are we?” Adam asked as we looked off into the darkness.

“I have no idea,” Jonathan answered him.“But we should probably stop to get some booze and food before everything closes.” It sounded like such a good idea at the time. We all piled out of the car in front of a supermarket and stretched and yawned.

“You guys go on ahead,” Garth said to the two boys. “I’m just going to double check the trunk for my shoes. Maybe I did bring them.” So I stayed back with Garth and we looked and looked through all the luggage and sure enough, no shoes.

“We’ll I guess we’ll just have to buy some,” I told him. We went into the store and Garth caught up with the guys to get random food and alcohol. I decided to try my luck at the slot machines inside the supermarket. Who ever heard of such a thing? SPINNNNNN….. LOSER. SPINNNNNN….. LOSER. SPINNNNNN….. LOSER.

“Stace, we’re ready,” the guys informed me. Just as well. I was out of quarters. We wheeled our small cart out to the car. We all stood there patiently looking at one another.

“Who has the keys?” Jonathon asked.

“Oh, hold on,” Garth said while digging through his pockets. And digging, and digging. Still digging.

“Oh shiiiiiittttt,” Garth said looking deflated.

“What?” Adam asked.

“I think I locked the keys in the trunk.” SPINNNNNN….. LOSER. Being the one responsible person in the relationship, with a Pontiac Firebird that broke down every couple of months, I pulled out my Triple A card.

“We’ll call Triple A and see if we can get some one out here to get the keys out of the trunk,” I said. At this point in the night we were all so tired and apparently so was the rest of Nevada.

“I’m sorry but we can’t find anyone to come out and open the trunk up for you,” the nice woman at Triple A told me.

“Look, we’re from California and have no place to stay. We’re currently stuck in a shopping center parking lot, and we can’t even sleep in the car. Can you please, please keep looking? “ I begged her over the phone.

*Silence* “I’ll see what I can do,” she said. About 20 or so minutes later the payphone rang.

“Hello?” I said into the receiver.

“Stacy?”

“Yes.”

“This is your savior from Triple A. I have found one man who is willing to come out to you at this hour, but it’s going to take it at least a half hour to get to you.”

“We’ll wait.” So we waited. And while we waited, we lost more money at the slot machines. Eventually, our angel in a tow truck arrived to free the poor lonely keys that were still in search of shoes in the truck of our Cadillac Seville.

“Here you go kids,” the obviously tired man said to us while handing back our keys.

“Thank you. Thank you so much!” I said to him as I tipped him a $20.

At this point we were all so tired and well into the wee hours of the morning. We climbed back into the car and drove around Nevada looking for a hotel room constantly coming up short. We finally found a hotel in Mesquite Nevada that was not only open, but had a room available. Now I don’t know if you’ve ever had the pleasure of staying in Mesquite. But if you haven’t, I highly recommend you cross it off of your list of “Things to do.” The hotel manager was kind enough to take us to our room, which was possibly the closest thing to the pit of darkness one would ever have the pleasure of staying in.

“I have to pee so bad!” I exclaimed as I walked in the room and dropped my suitcase.

“Me too. But I have to drop a deuce so you go first,” Adam told me. So off I went. And went. And went. I told you I had to pee. Then when I was done both Adam and Jonathon proceeded to use the bathroom. Before I knew it we were making a call to the front desk because our poor little toilet had apparently waived the white flag in defeat. After the hotel manager fixed the problem and we were free from the storm brewing in the tiny toilet, we all sat down and smoked one of our 6 joints and drank some tequila and some nice cold beer.

“We’re going to the bar, “ Jonathon informed Garth and I. “Do you guys want to come?”

“I’m exhausted. I’m going to bed,” I told the Midnight Train.

“Okay, but you’re going to miss out,” Adam said. Somehow I didn’t believe him.

After Jonathon and Adam left I brushed my teeth and climbed into the double bed Garth and I were sharing. As I lay my head down on the pillow I looked up at the ceiling and saw Charlotte.

“There is a HUGE spider on the ceiling.” I told Garth. I know I’m going to wake up in the morning and there is going to be a giant web over our heads that says “Kill, kill.” Garth just looked at the ceiling, then looked at the bathroom, and instead of killing the spider, he made a beeline for the bathroom for what I’m assuming was to grace our poor toilet with another deuce. And just as I was about to fall I sleep I heard him emerge. And I could have sworn I heard Garth say, “Stacy, I need you to go check the women’s restroom.”

To be continued…

A tale of two Garths. Chapter 44. “I’m sorry…but I’m not the manager you’re looking for.”

Posted in Uncategorized on May 28, 2011 by mrsdiagnosed

The days drug on and on in what seemed like an endless sea of work and movie, work and movie, work and movie. I was getting seriously burnt out.

“I have another audition for you,” my manager told me over the phone. Please let this be the one.

“It’s for a movie called Black Scorpion. You’re trying out for the lead role. She’s a super hero. I’ve got a good feeling about this one,” she told me.

Super hero huh? This is SO up my alley! So I did what any good actress would do: I went out and bought a pair of knee high patent leather boots that I couldn’t afford. Come on, this was a once in a lifetime opportunity here.

Two days later I got myself ready to drive down to Westwood for the audition. I slicked my hair back, smoothed on some smoky eye shadow, and squeezed into the tiniest black tank top I could find. Broke out a very short black skirt, and topped it all off with the Pièce de résistance, the new black boots. I looked in the mirror and was feeling so fly. Damn I’m fine! I even felt like a super hero.

I somehow managed to weasel my car keys away from Garth so I could at least ride in an air-conditioned automobile. How I was able to accomplish this?  I have no idea. Maybe he thought I was taking it out to get it washed for him. Either way, it was I who had the keys to the hot red Pontiac Firebird. It was I who looked like I had just walked out of a Robert Palmer music video. It was I who was going to have to face it – I was addicted to love.

I parked the “Red Rocket,” and proceeded to strut my super hero ass down the street. I was feeling on top of the world and the catcalls just added to my arrogance. I was hot. I was dangerous. I was Black Scorpion. And I was not alone. I opened the door to the audition to find that every other actress at the audition must have gotten the same memo about how a super hero dresses because they all basically had on the exact same outfit. Right down to the over-priced black boots. I see I’m not the only one addicted to love. My heart dropped. And that’s when my bitchy defense kicked in. I started to physically pick apart each and every one of them to make myself feel better. She has really nice legs…but I have way better hair. Oh that one in the corner is cute…if you’re into girls that look like they’ve been ridden hard and put away wet. 

But then someone managed to trump even my bitchiness. She had long dark brown hair and a really nice body. All in all she was pretty damn gorgeous. Well, Miss Gorgeous did something I’ve never seen happen before in an audition; she proceeded to strut repeatedly back and forth in front of all of us. I think one sway of her hips put at least three girls in comas and I know of one who has never regained her ability to speak. That bitch is NOT strutting in front of us. Tell me I’m imagining this, but sure enough she just kept on doing it. This, my friends, is a tactic that the United States Military is now using to fight the war on terror. Water boarding is a myth; this bitch is for real! Stacy, do not let her psych you out. I even tried my Buddhist chant: Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. But it didn’t work. All I could think about was how I wanted to sign this bitch up for the Godiva Chocolate Of The Month Program.  I’m sure the other girls would have gladly pitched in for the cause.

Even with Miss Gorgeous doing her absolute best to try and break my self-confidence, I still felt my audition went pretty well. I was strong, I was sassy, I was super hero..ish? I WAS….not going to be playing the part of the Black Scorpion. Not getting the role was not the worst part. At this point I had developed a pretty tough skin and rejection was the nature of the business. But finding out that I lost the part to Joan Severance? Hi wound, meet salt. I don’t know how many of you remember Joan. She’s a B actress who mostly did low-budget stuff in the 80’s and 90’s, and I had once briefly been hired on to be her body double. Until I quit that is. I couldn’t stand the woman. She was arrogant and just plain mean. Hell, I would have been happier if the slutter- sorry, strutter would have landed the part.

Hearing that Joan “Is she thin enough to fit into my clothes?” Severance had cost me another job was too much to bear. I was over the acting thing and needed a break. I just want to go to work and hang with my friends. I couldn’t believe what I was thinking. I actually wanted to go wait tables so I could see my co-workers. My friendly, relatively normal, funny, co-workers. I got to work and my mood changed immediately. It was a Friday night. I had the best station in the restaurant. And the Friday night staff was stellar. This was going to be a good night. Not to mention, Ashley and Becky were going to have a party at their house afterwards. Things were looking up.

My station was the first to get sat, the second to get sat, and the third to get sat. I was about to make some serious cash. Everything was working like clockwork that night. My customers were great, my timing was on, and the tips were generous. And then table 15 was sat for the third time. No worries. I was in the zone. I approached the two rather large gentlemen who now occupied my table.

“Good evening, gentlemen. How are you do—“

“We’re ready to order,” the one on the right cut me off, without making eye contact.

Okay, so this is how you guys roll? That’s cool with me. The less talky-talky, the quicker I turn this table and the more money I make.

“Sure, what can I get for you?” I asked them.

“We want a Rotisserie Chicken.”

”Would you like that with mashed or –”

“Mashed Potatoes,” he cut me off again.  I just nodded and wrote it down.

“We also want a Chinese Chicken Salad, a Meatloaf dinner with mashed potatoes, and Tuna Melt with french fries. We’re going to share them. But you don’t need to bring us extra plates.”

“Would you like something to drink?” I asked.

“What do you have that has free refills?” Sigh…Not a good sign.

“Iced tea and lemonade.”

“No sodas?”

“No, I’m sorry, but we charge for refills on the sodas.”

“We’ll take two iced teas then.” Seemed easy enough. All I had to do was get them their drinks and four full size entrees of food and let them have at it. Piece of cake.

I got them their drinks and before I knew it, their food was in the window and ready to be devoured. And boy howdy was it devoured. I hardly set the plates on the table before they started digging in. I swear one of them almost stabbed me with a fork. I took care of all my other tables and made sure to keep their iced teas filled to the brim. I must have walked past that table at least 7 or 8 times and I never once saw them put a fork down to take in air. Wow these guys can eat. It looked like Jabba the Hutt and his twin brother at a buffet. The only things that were missing were a laughing lizard and a chained up Carrie Fisher. Yikes. But I thought our relationship was moving along swimmingly. I kept them in iced tea, and they ate everything except the table. But even that was in jeopardy.  So you can imagine my surprise when the guy on the left told me he’d like to speak with the manager. They must have found a hair or something. Oh the kitchen is going to get it. Ha ha! So I brought my very sweet, very rookie manager Luis to the feast already in progress at table 15.

“Hello, may I help you gentlemen?” Luis asked in his cute little Spanish accent.

“I want to complain about your server,” Jabba #1 said.

What the Hell? Seriously? Whatever. Once they started complaining about me I took it as my cue to exit the vicinity.

“No, I want you to stay here and listen to this,” Jabba #1 said, pointing at me with one of his stubby little sausage fingers. So out of morbid curiosity, I stood there with Luis to hear what the complaints were.

“We’ve been sitting here the whole time and she never once asked how we were doing, or offered to take our plates from the table.”

Look here Jabba. You fat mother @#$$%^%&%^&!!!!! But I kept my lovely thoughts to myself and tried to defend myself more… appropriately.

“If you remember correctly I did come by and ask you how you were doing. And that’s when this guy,” and I pointed to Jabba #2, “with a mouth full of food asked me for some ranch to dip your fries in. And as far as clearing your plates go, you never once stopped eating long enough for me to even THINK about taking them off the table!” Before either one could respond, I calmly turned to Luis.

“Luis, I’m going to walk away now.”

“No Stacy, you need to stay here.”

“No Luis, I don’t. It’s your job to listen to complaints, and it’s my job to wait on the tables. So, if you don’t mind, I’m going to go do my job.”

“The Force is strong with this one,” I smiled to myself as I walked away from the Jabba twins. Luis was distraught but he got over it. He was a strong little Storm Trooper.

Two months later the managers all had a meeting about me. This should be good. I was asked to come into work 45 minutes early so I could have a talk with our General Manager. I was not a happy camper. I walked into the office and sat down, waiting for something terrible to happen. And it did.

“Stacy we want to offer you a management position.” She said. They must be smoking crack.

“Ummmm… thanks? But how much does that pay?” I asked. And she gave me a dollar figure I almost choked on. No wonder she’s so skinny. She can’t afford to eat!

“That’s per week, right?”

“No, that’s per month.”

“Do the managers still have health insurance?”

“No,” she informed me.

Okay, that’s an easy one.

“No thanks,” I told her. “I’m happy where I am.” Yes I could have taken the job and gotten to walk around in fancy clothes and look all bossy and stuff. But let’s be honest, they were just underpaid babysitters who had to put up with WAY too much crap from the customers. And even MORE crap from us servers. My General Manager looked at me with pleading eyes, “Help me Obi-Wan Kenobi. You’re my only hope.” I looked her in the eyes and passed my hand in front of her face.

“I’m sorry…but I’m not the manager you’re looking for.”

To be continued….

Love it? Hate it? Let me know! Send questions, comments, brownie recipes or random brainfarts to: mrsdiagnosed@yahoo.com

A tale of two Garths. Chapter 43. “Somebody call 911!”

Posted in A Tale Of Two Garths on May 12, 2011 by mrsdiagnosed

A couple more days went by before Garth came home from being on location, and things pretty much returned to normal. I continued to work double shifts to get by, and he and I got back to making the movie we had been shooting for months and months now. The movie had been a long haul but we were getting closer to an end. Finally.

But before we could celebrate we still had some work to do. It was time to shoot my character’s driving scene. Yippee! I know, I know. What’s the big deal about a driving scene? Well, let me tell you. My character was taking shots of tequila throughout the whole scene. Driving and doing shots you say? Oooohhhh yea baby. Cause that’s how my character rolls.

So there we all were in some park in the Valley. Garth, Garth’s step-dad, Peter, Garth’s mom, Heidi, and Moi. Peter was working the camera, and Heidi was doing sound. Me? I was drinking REAL tequila and driving all over the child filled park. This is probably not a wise decision, I thought to myself. I’m just kidding, of course I didn’t think that. But what I did think was, please tell me that was a speed bump and not some girl scout trying to earn her ‘directing traffic’ merit badge. And that’s about the time I noticed the Po Po cruising the park. He looked at me with authority, and I pretended I wasn’t drunk and silently prayed that I didn’t get arrested. Hell I’d pretty much do anything for my art, but getting a DUI was not on that list.

After we got done at the park we all went back to Garth’s house for a nice big lunch. Which I seriously needed. I shoved a huge sandwich down my pie hole hoping it might sober me up a bit. I did. But not by much. And just as I was thinking, oh my God I can’t wait to go home and sleep this off, Garth’s dad informed us we were going to continue shooting on into the night. Please kill me.

And that’s when the search for the perfect lighting and scenery came in. I’m not sure if you remember me telling you that we didn’t have any permits to legally shoot this movie. So we had to make do in places where we had a better chance of not getting caught. In this case, it was the ghetto. That’s when one of the guys from my acting class showed up. He played the part of ‘Best Friend.’ As all five of us stood on a street lined with trashcans and debris, people started popping their heads out of their homes to see if they were going to get the opportunity to be the leading role on this weeks episode of ‘Cops.’

“We need to clear the background a bit,” Peter told us. So Heidi, Garth, ‘Best Friend’ Eric and drunkie Mc Slutty started pulling trashcans and trash around. Now I’m not sure it was such a great idea for us to be drawing so much attention to ourselves. Especially considering Peter had a very expensive, very borrowed movie camera on him. Not to mention the sound equipment. And then there was the barely there top I was wearing. Let’s just say if we actually were shooting an episode of Cops, they may have had to blur out the top half of me.

Eventually the residents of skid row decided that watching a bunch of stupid white people cleaning up all their trash wasn’t as entertaining as they thought it would be, and they went back inside their homes to do something more fulfilling. Like sleeping. It was either that, or the fact that the sun had set and it was now very, very dark, and we were well on our way to winning the dumbest white people of the year award. We were in the hood, after dark, with some very expensive shit. At what point was someone going to say, “This might not be the best idea.” But it never happened. No one was smart enough, or sober enough to say it. So we set up our lights and commenced shooting.

Let me break the scene down for you. The main character ‘Bob’ (played by Garth) is driving with his crazy ass girlfriend (me) back to his place, when they happen across a terrible accident. That’s when ‘Bob’ sees that his best friend’s car is one of the cars in the accident. ‘Bob’ and I rush from the car to find his best friend thrown from the car and lying on the pavement in a pool of blood. This is where ‘Bob’ starts screaming “Someone call 911!” Which in this particular neighborhood isn’t even close to being funny. That’s when I kneel down to Bob’s best friend, cradle him in my lap and look up into the perfect lighting with a look of agony on my face and a slight welling of tears in my eyes. For me, it was my money shot. If I could do an entire movie of just that shot playing over and over again I would be famous right now. But I had to share the spotlight. Life is so unfair!

But the movie continued…and continued…and continued….for months, and months, and years, and years until we were finally so old we had to be put in homes because we could no longer clean ourselves. But that’s probably a slight exaggeration. Let’s get back to the story shall we?

A couple of weeks later we had a new cast member join our happy little group. His name was Johnny. I would like to say that Johnny was hideous, but that would be a lie. Johnny was the tattooed friend of my no tooth pot dealer Jimmy. Jimmy wasn’t really “toothless;” he was just missing the front two. I’m assuming they got knocked out. I never really asked him. There’s never really a nice way to ask someone, “Yo, how did you lose your two front teeth? Did you get knocked out or something?” That’s like someone asking me, “Hey, how did your ass get so fat? Did you eat a lot of cake or something?” Sometimes it’s just better if you don’t say anything at all.

Because of our lack of permits and resources we didn’t shoot the script in the sequence that it was written. We might shoot scene 24 one day, scene 3 the next day, and scene 15 the day after that. At times it was frustrating, but it kept us on our toes. So on this particular day, we were shooting the scene where my character leaves her boyfriend, played by Johnny. We shot in the apartment I shared with Garth. The scene went something like this. My character went home to grab some of her things when her big, burly, sexy, hot, steamy…wait, I’m going to need a moment to compose myself here……………………………Okay, I’m good. *Deep Breath* When her big, Bohunk of an ex boyfriend chases her out of the apartment and down the street. How does she escape his warm, tender, soft, seductive, enticing…oh shit I’m doing it again…clutches? But let’s be honest, the guy was pretty damn yummy. And so, so nice. He was much nicer to me than my own stupid boyfriend was, that’s for sure.

After acting with Johnny for a while we actually ended up being pretty good friends. Very good, very platonic friends.  You see, I’m about 40% man. Not in the “I’ve had to go see a specialist for a gender reassignment” kind of way. But in a “Just one of the guys’ kind of way. I burp like a man, I cuss like a sailor, and I fight like…well I’m a dirty fighter. But hey, somebody’s gotta win; it might as well be me.

So Johnny and I started hanging out together. I would go by Jimmy’s to score some weed and stick around and shoot the shit with the guys for a while. But that’s when I started noticing that Garth was also taking note of Johnny and our newfound friendship. This was about the time my dad called me to let me know he and my step mom had just bought a new refrigerator, and asked me if I wanted his old one.

“YES we want the old one!” I told him on the phone. It may have been old to him, but to us it was brand new. The one we had at that time was a dorm size fridge. It didn’t even make ice it was that pathetic.

“Okay, but you have to come get it,” my dad told me.

The only problem was, we didn’t have a big enough vehicle. I was still driving Garth’s beat up old Volvo and he was still driving my fairly new, air-conditioned, great stereo, Firebird. Asshole! But we did have one friend who had a perfect car for the job. Johnny. Johnny owned a gigantic black flat bed truck of some kind. This truck was shiny, new, black, and it purred when you turned it on. And now it was going to drive to Long Beach to get a refrigerator for me.

Garth and Johnny came back from Long Beach with my new ice-making refrigerator and placed it gently in our hideously small kitchen. Garth gave Johnny some money for helping us out, as I was just about to reach second base with my new refrigerator.

“I’ll catch you guys later,” Johnny said on the way out of our apartment. But we never did catch him later. He had already shot all the scenes he was in for the movie, but something changed. I don’t know if something happened in the truck on the drive back home. Maybe my dad sent off a vibe he liked Johnny better, I didn’t know exactly what it was but there was a whole new energy to Garth. I wouldn’t find out for almost two years after exactly what that energy was. But it was a darkness that Garth emitted. A darkness he made sure I never saw, but made sure other men were well aware of. There were so many things I didn’t know about him. So many things I would eventually find out. Not only was my heart going to be broken into tiny little pieces. But what was left of my innocence would start to seep from my body like a tiny leak. A leak I didn’t see and couldn’t stop. Until finally, the dam would break clean open.

To be continued….

Love it? Hate it? Let me know! Send questions, comments, brownie recipes or random brainfarts to: mrsdiagnosed@yahoo.com

2010 in review

Posted in Uncategorized on May 9, 2011 by mrsdiagnosed

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A helper monkey made this abstract painting, inspired by your stats.

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 7,800 times in 2010. That’s about 19 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 247 new posts, not bad for the first year! There were 26 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 21mb. That’s about 2 pictures per month.

The busiest day of the year was March 25th with 131 views. The most popular post that day was Facebook saved my life!!.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were facebook.com, apps.facebook.com, touch.facebook.com, mail.yahoo.com, and alphainventions.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for mrsdiagnosed blog, mrsdiagnosed, dentist crowns, “tried the plunger” ” husband, and fhasai da-nga.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Facebook saved my life!! March 2010
6 comments

2

Bally’s March 2010
7 comments

3

A Wise Friend. April 2010
11 comments

4

“My Precious” April 2010
5 comments

5

Two idiots at a wedding. March 2010
2 comments

A tale of two Garths. Chapter 42. “Please deposit 35 cents.”

Posted in Uncategorized on March 22, 2011 by mrsdiagnosed

“Hey babe. How are you? I miss you so much.” Who is this? At this point Garth had been filming out of town for so long the only way I recognized him was from the familiar jingle of my car keys in his pocket.

“Hey, how are you? I miss you too.” I told him. And it was true. I did miss him. I had spent almost two weeks by myself at this point and was actually starting to question if I even had a boyfriend or not.

“Hi Garth,” I heard a sweet giggling voice in the background.

“Hi Sally, I’ll be right there,” he replied to Miss Giggles A Lot. What the fuck? I could already feel my blood boiling.

“Who’s Sally?” I asked in my nicest I’m just asking because I care, not because I think you may be up to something voice.

“Oh, she’s just one of the production assistants I work with,” he said very nonchalantly.

“Please deposit 35 cents,” I heard the automated operator’s voice come over the phone.

“Hold on babe, I need to deposit more money,” he said to me as I could hear him fishing around for more change.

“Garth, you’re missing the party man,” I heard Garth’s friend Paul say loud and clear to him in passing.

“Please deposit 35 cents.”

At this point the Stacy’s going to kill someone light had changed from yellow to a deep orange. But it was wasted because there was no one there to see it.

*Clink* I heard the money being dropped into the pay phone.

“Thank you,” said the operated voice. Was she invited to the party too?

“Why didn’t you just call me from your room?” I asked.

“Because the party’s in my room,” he told me.

**WARNING! Stacy homicidal threat level reaching RED**

Now, I know how it sounds. Maybe I didn’t have any reason to be pissed off at Garth. I realize that I had just been to some Hollywood parties of my own, where the men were so beautiful that just looking at them made most women’s panties literally jump off of their bodies. However, they were never IN MY ROOM!

“So Sally and a bunch of other people are currently in your room partying, while you’re out in the hall on a payphone talking to me?”

“Yeah.”

“Please deposit 35 cents.”

“Wow. 35 cents doesn’t get you very far does it?” I said clearly irritated.

“Well, I’m out of money babe,” he said into the receiver.

“Please deposit 35 cents.”

“I hate you,” I whispered back, partly to Garth and partly to that damned robotic voice that was taking him away from me.

“I can’t hear you over the operator,” he said.

“Please deposit 35 cents.”

“I love you babe,” was all I heard before the connection was lost for lack of 35 cents.

As I hung up the phone so many scenarios played out in my head. I could visualize Paul and Garth doing lines of blow off Sally’s taut ass. Stop it Stacy, you’re just upsetting yourself. It’s just a work party. No big deal. It’s just a work party. But why didn’t he want to talk to me in front of his friends? After letting my mind race around like a mouse on a spinning wheel, I finally fell into a slumber. I woke up the next morning to the ringing phone.

“Hello,” I said into the receiver expecting it to be the payphone operator informing me that Garth still owed her 35 cents. And if I didn’t repay his debt, she and her robot buddies would come over to re-program my microwave.

“Hey Stacy, it’s Sheryl.”

“Hi Sheryl!” it was my theatrical manager. I wasn’t expecting to hear from her.

“I have an audition for you.”

“Really?” I was so excited. “What’s it for?”

“It’s for the TV show ‘Men Behaving Badly.’ Have you heard of it?”

“Isn’t that the show with Rob Schneider?”

“It is. They are auditioning a basketball player type as a sort of love interest for his character, and with your height I thought you would be perfect!”

“I’m totally in!” I told her. Little did she know, I actually had played basketball in 9th grade and was possibly the worst player on the team. I did, however, win Most Inspirational and I think that should count for something. Don’t you?

Later that afternoon I went over to my manager’s office and picked up the script for the next day’s auditions. I was elated! This was a pretty big show at the time, and if I could land this gig I would make not only a nice chunk of change, but would have the opportunity to get myself seen.

The next day I was up bright and early for my audition at CBS. Once I walked up to the building I could tell instantly I was in the right place, but maybe in the wrong clothes. Every girl there was wearing a basketball uniform but me. To be honest they all kind of looked a little ridiculous. There was one girl practicing shooting with her invisible basketball. Another one was dribbling her invisible basketball down an invisible court. I could tell just by looking at her she was invisible traveling and I was tempted to blow my invisible whistle to call her on it. But basketball uniform or no basketball uniform this audition was going to be mine. I stood outside with all my competition and went over my lines again and again in my head trying to remember to just act natural. This is not theater, this is TV Stacy. So remember: pull the acting way in.

Even though there were a ton of girls to go through, it didn’t feel like I waited very long at all before my name was called. I entered the casting director’s office and she read the lines with me. We went back and forth playing off one another. We had a good chemistry, even though if I got the part I would be acting across from a man instead of her.

“That’s great Stacy,” she said. “Can you come back at 3:00 to meet with producers?”

What did she just say? Did she just say I made it to the producers? I almost freaked out right there in her office. Hold it together. Hold it together. Hold it together.

“That would be great. 3:00 is great for me. Thank you so much,” I said while I flashed her my pearly whites.

I ran out of the office and down the stairs so fast I almost fouled two or three other actresses. If I kept this up I was going to be benched for the rest of the game. I jumped in my car and drove straight home. I couldn’t wait to call Sheryl and tell her I had made it to producers.

“I’m so happy for you!” she said to me. “You were right, I think comedy may be your thing.”

“So what does this mean exactly?” I asked her.

“Well, it means you are up against one, possibly two other girls for the role.”

“Oh my God. Are you serious? I’m that close?”

“Yes my dear, you are. Now try and relax until you have to go back. Don’t let yourself get all worked up okay?”

*Silence*

“Ooookaaay?”

“Yea, yea I hear ya,” I told her as my mind raced a thousand miles an hour. 3:00 seemed so far away. To try and keep my mind off of it, I cleaned my house, did the dishes, diversified my stock holdings, cured cancer, and recreated Salvador Dali’s “Woman at the Window at Figueras’ 1926 painting using only nail polish and glitter glue. So you can imagine how happy I was when 3:00 finally arrived.

This time when I went back to CBS I didn’t see a gaggle of tall women in basketball uniforms, but I did see the same casting director and a couple of producers from the Carsey Warner Company. This is it! I walked into the room and everyone was just so nice. It was a very inviting atmosphere. Not that auditions are cold or anything, but when you have to sift through 100 or more girls each time I assume it can get kind of tedious. This time was totally different. It was way more laid back. The casting director had done her job, now all they had to do was pick.

Once again I read with the casting director and once again our chemistry was on point. BUT, of course there is a but.

“Can you just be a little more clumsy?” One of the producers asked me. “You know, more goofy.” Goofy. Sure I can do goofy. So the casting director and I redid the scene and I played it “Goofy.”

“Thank you so much. You’ll be hearing from us,” the casting director told me. I felt pretty confident I had nailed the part. I felt positive, and not in an arrogant kind of way. I just felt like there was a good vibe to the room and I had the producers laughing and how can you go wrong with laughing? It’s a sitcom right?

I went back home and waited by the phone. And waited a little longer. But before I could solve the square root of 598974131679436145749415748. My phone rang.

“Hey Stacy, it’s Sheryl,” she didn’t sound happy or unhappy.

“Hi Sheryl” I said back to her.

“You didn’t get the part,” My heart sank. “BUT, they really did like you. They said you were too pretty for the role.”

“Too pretty?”

“Yes. They went with someone who is slightly less attractive and naturally more clumsy.” Too pretty? “Look, they already told me they want to call you back in the future. But you just didn’t fit the role as well as the other girl did. Don’t get discouraged. You making it to producers on your first audition for them is a big deal. You need to congratulate yourself.” She was right. I had already gone to a ton of auditions at this point and had never yet made it to producers. I did need to congratulate myself. I had a small taste of success. And I’m not going to lie, it tasted awfully sweet.

To be continued…..

Love it? Hate it? Let me know! Send questions, comments, brownie recipes or random brainfarts to: mrsdiagnosed@yahoo.com

%d bloggers like this: