Wednesday, December 21, 2005


Don't be upset with me, my dears, for leaving you with another video clip. This shit is funny as hell...

Lazy Sunday

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

warped christmas

Not enough disco in your Christmas? Tired of the same ol' jolly elf with his rosy cheeks and "ho ho ho's" year after year? Check out Chris Christmas Rodriguez for some holiday cheer.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

six fifty-seven

There are few of you who have been reading this blog from the start (mom, you rock). Those of you who have know that my blogging adventures began in March this year over at friendster, and you will perhaps remember a post all the way back in May that told the tale of a nerve-wracking audition for a television pilot.

After a few days of nail-biting I found out I got the role and eagerly awaited filming sometime in the summer. Scheduling conflicts abounded as well as location difficulties. And we waited. And we waited. And fall came and went and we waited some more.

Well, friends, last Saturday morning I arrived at South Station with lines memorized, costumes in hand, and hope in my heart, and—miracle of miracles—after eight long months of anticipation we finally filmed The Six Fifty-Seven!

The MBTA set aside a commuter rail train for us to use and we loaded in with lights, cameras, and extras. It was a marathon of a day—shooting 24 minutes of script in less than eight hours is an extraordinary feat (I’ve spent 8 hours on 5 minutes of script and still felt rushed) but we did our best.

The technical stuff (lighting, camera angles, continuity) is out of my hands so I don’t worry about it. As for the acting, I couldn’t feel better. The ensemble we started with was very strong, and that chemistry only got better over these past months. I had a fantastic time working with my fellow actors, laughing at our many flubs, finding new moments in the text, and finally finally completing the job we’d set out to do.

I’m really grateful for the experience. I had a blast playing all day and I want to thank our fantastic director, Dan, and extraordinary writers, Andy and Toni, for all their hard work. They’ve kept the faith all these months and worked so hard to make this project come to life.

I hope we’ve done something they can be proud of—I know I am.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

100 things pt. 1

The weird thing about blogging is that I feel compelled to do it even if I have absolutely nothing to say. I’m at that place now. I’ve been a little sick the past few days, so the sum total of new experiences I have to share would all relate to really bad reality television. Let’s skip that, shall we?

Have you seen these lists people make… “100 things about me”? That seems like an awful lot, but maybe I’ll do an abbreviated version:

1. My maiden name is Summer Ryan Ostlund. Ostlund was originally the Swedish “Olsen,” but there were a few too many of us getting off the boat, so the kind folks in immigration changed it for us many generations ago. “Ostlund” also happens to mean “Cheese Meadow” in Danish.

2. Before I was an actor I was a dancer. I did Pointe (ballet) for six years.

3. I was born in Kearney, Nebraska. Living in New York and Boston has toughened me up a bit, but I think I’ll always have my Midwestern manners.

4. I have been a vegetarian for 8 years.

5. I think people who drive Hummers are ridiculous.

6. Bill Pete is my favorite children’s book author.

Okay, so that was a REALLY short list. I’m a little more tired than I thought, so I’m going to pause here. To be continued?

Saturday, November 19, 2005

who needs prozac?

Okay, after re-reading the "haiku of despair" post from yesterday, I kind of caught on to the fact that I'm a little down. Nothing major. I think it's just the combination of being between projects and my annual bout of Seasonal Affective Disorder.

I've been inside a lot lately because I really fucking hate the cold--but that just means I get less sunlight and turn into Albino Grumpy-Pants. What to do?

For starters I'm going to go workout this morning--get the endorphins flowing, get my sweat on. After that I have an audition for a sitcom in which I get to read for a Janeane Garofalo type. And finally, I'm going drink lots and lots of beer (our friend is having a way-belated Octoberfest party today--the man brews his own beer and has a customized fridge with five taps on the side. Wicked Rad!).

And if all that doesn't improve my mood, then I'm a lost cause.

Friday, November 18, 2005

holiday haikus

freezing my ass off
frosty new england winters
suck like no other

Shakespeare auditions
consume my focus and time
yet no one hires

cooking and cleaning
hours of domestic work
kind of drive me nuts

Wednesday, November 09, 2005


Sorry for the long absence, my friends. I've been wrapping up a show and doing a bit of traveling, so I haven't had much time to interact with my beloved computer.

Professional Skepticism was surrounded by an eerie curse... two of our actors sprained their ankles a few days before we went up. Completely unrelated accidents, proving the universe has an even more sick sense of humor than I ever imagined. Here's how the initial conversation with me and another castmate went:

Summer (arriving at rehearsal): Hey, Ben. Seth is going to be a bit late. You heard about his leg, right?
Ben: You mean Bill.
Summer: Um... no. Seth called me earlier today and said he sprained his ankle.
Ben: You mean Bill called you, right?
Summer: Bill hurt his leg?
Ben: Seth hurt his leg?
Summer: Oh my god...

You can imagine the rest. Now, this was a few days before we opened, so we weren't entirely certain we could manage. But in the spirit of any seasoned thespian we forged ahead. We frantically reblocked the play to take out some of the more dangerous fight scenes and incorporated Seth's limp (which was more severe than Bill's) as a character trait. I thought we had salvaged the show and we all had hopes of putting on a beautiful performance.

Alas, the Powers That Be did not agree. Unfortunately the "show must go on" edict is not universally known, and as this was a production hosted by an academic group (at a business school), our producer decided to cut his losses and mount a staged reading instead. This news came to us the night of our final dress run and was a shocking blow.

As painful as it was to sit shackled to our chairs, scripts in hand, in front of hundreds of Bentley College freshmen for three nights, I must say that we put on the best damn staged reading possible. Lines memorized, characters fully developed, our freaking staged reading held a captive and entertained audience.

So, to my intrepid cast, thank you for bravely forging ahead, for keeping the faith against unbelievable obstacles, and for helping me laugh about the whole sad situation. I love you kids.

Here they are, my boys, my heroes...

Thursday, October 27, 2005

life of a dog

It's funny, but "dignity" isn't the first word that came to mind when I viewed these pics (only two from a list of thirty-one "pet Halloween costume ideas!").

I understand loving your pets. They're amazing companions, and most of them are more loyal, good-natured, and--dare I say it?--intelligent than humans. But must we anthropomorphize the poor beasts? Can't we show our love and appreciation without subjecting them to the indignity of silly costumes?

At least these animals have it better off than Tinkerbell. That poor dog not only has to play dress up every day, but also has the unlucky fate of spending every minute of it's life with this.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

we are the champions

Well, it's official folks. I've won my first Major Award! It's not a leg lamp, but I couldn't be more proud. To find out how I have achieved the distinction of "Master of Trivia" head on over to my friend Andy's Blog (pt. 1 & 2).

P.S. I know this is a sad excuse for an entry, but I'm too busy basking in the glory of success and can't be bothered to post about something more significant. You understand, don't you, darlings?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

goin' to the chapel

A couple pictures from the wedding I went to this weekend. The groom proposed while scuba diving--perhaps one of the coolest proposals I've heard of--so the wedding cake was this fantastic tribute to the reception's underwater theme. And Thom and I? Well, my husband looks handsome as ever. I've got a bit of the deer-on-quaaludes-in-headlights look. You'll notice the fake eyelashes... that's what happens when you're a lightweight and decide to do your makeup after drinking a glass of wine. At least I was having a good time, right?

Friday, October 07, 2005

I'm huge in Europe


This is a trailer for a short film I worked on. Watch close; you'll miss me if you blink. :)

It's nice to have one of the film projects I've done actually come to completion. One down, nine+ to go.

Still, apparently my name is getting around. My mom's friend, Liz, wrote the other day to tell me about an encounter she had with a sales rep for a textbook company. When the rep walked into her office and saw my picture on the wall, she said, "How do you know her?"

Liz told her she's known me since I was a little girl, and the sales rep replied, "She's an actress, isn't she? I think I've seen her in movies."

So here's the hilarious part: I haven't even seen me in movies. If there are completed copies of work I've done out there, I certainly don't have them. But I think I can solve the mystery of how this random sales rep from California would know me.

I've done a few industrials for Macmillan--video supplimentals to their textbooks--and being in the industry, she might have come across them. I should get in touch with her and ask her how they were--who knows how long it'll be until I get to see them.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

facial hair

A few of the fine men who competed in the World Beard and Moustaches championships in Berlin on October 1.

It's all well and good to look like that for a competition, but can you imagine walking around with some of those beards every day?

Monday, October 03, 2005

have a nice trip, see you next fall

My grandparents' visit went swimmingly, and I even managed to avoid patronizing any frighteningly cheerful tourist traps (alas, that is a fate I haven't always escaped).

So gramps and grams are off on their great adventure in Canada and will be back to stay a few more days after their tour ends. In the mean time, my brother-in-law, Kevin, will be in town for a wedding (and hopefully some job interviews). We'd love it if he and his wife-to-be were just slightly closer than halfway around the world.

Our autumn is already looking packed with two weddings (one in Wisconsin), one trip to see friends (in Indiana), and family coming for Thanksgiving.

I don't know, if we were really efficient we could probably fit in a Bar mitzvah and a cross-country drive too.

Friday, September 30, 2005

fuzzy math

My gramps and grams are in town which means two things:

1) I will be enjoying grandma's homemade cookies and jam very soon.

2) I will almost certainly have to take the dreaded duck tour I have thus far managed to avoid.

The outcome of these possibilities may be illustrated by the following equations:

c2 + j > dt (cookies squared plus jam is greater than duck tour)

dt+ ch = bfe (duck tour plus Cheers equals bleeding from eyes)

So. Let's hope I still have the gift of sight the next time you hear from me. At the very least I will have the gift of cookies.

Monday, September 26, 2005

nerds on stage

I bit of news: I've been cast in a play called "Professional Skepticism" by James Rasheed to go up at Bentley College in November. It's nice to have something consistent to work on again (my cats were getting way too much attention for a while there) and very nice to be paid for it.

The play takes place in a Big Five accounting firm in South Carolina and apparently I am the office hoochie. It's a nice little play that shows the dark underbelly of the world of accounting--I mean it, these people are conniving and mean. I'll never look at a guy who casually peppers his conversation with the word "fiscal" the same way again.

I like that it's in the same vein as Copenhagen and Arcadia--making an otherwise academic subject accessible to "artsy retards" like myself by giving dramatic life to the subject.

Friday, September 23, 2005

art project

I apologize for being a lazy blogger lately, but here's something that will give you hours of fun:

Just don't come crying to me when you've wasted an afternoon trying to create your very own South Park clone.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

so I married a corpse...

I saw a preview showing of Corpse Bride yesterday and as always, Tim Burton has out done himself with delightful creepiness. Stop-motion puppetry is the perfect medium for a story that might otherwise be too gory or gross to enjoy. The characters are fantastic, the visuals gorgeous, and the story absolutely sweet.

I've always been a fan of Burton's dark, subversive sensibilities and his longtime muse Johnny Depp. And I'm glad they're getting the word out early with these advance viewings because the natural audience for this type of film (um... goth kids and Tim Burton fans) is pretty small. It's certainly not a kids movie(though 8 and up would be pretty safe), and I don't imagine the Constant Gardener crowd will be rushing off to get tickets.

So here's my plug: underneath its gruesome aesthetic, Corpse Bride is a smart, funny, touching love story.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

I'll be in my trailer

Okay, no, I'm not being abused by my husband.

This is actually a shot of the stage make-up I used for a play I'm doing in Providence this weekend. I was really impressed with how it came out and wanted to share the creepiness with you.

Ugh. It's not pretty. And I'm sure my mom is having issues right now.

The show is a series of five minute plays and we're performing at 6pm in Tazza Cafe tomorrow night. Sorry, short notice for anyone who might come, but I figure Providence is a bit out of reach for most Bostonians.

On a completely unrelated note, earlier this week I got to "work with" one of my long-time acting crushes (if you consider "working with" standing in the background as an extra while said actor is 10 ft. away from you and never acknowledges your presence).

I was on the set of The Hill, formerly known as Brotherhood, which stars Ethan Embry of Can't Hardly Wait fame as well as quite a few other notable actors. I mention Embry only because a scant few years ago the chance to breath the same air as him could have only been surpassed by the opportunity to suck face with Christian Slater (whom my father always referred to as "Christian Slobber"--much to my chagrin).

Sorry, Thom, I'll stop talking about kissing other men now.

Anyway, I was on set all day (15 hours!) and I'm pretty sure I'm prominently featured in the background of one scene for about 15 seconds. Sweet! Fame, here I come.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

stage bias

I went to my first opera last night, the American Repertory Theatre's Carmen. This is, in fact, the only opera I have any knowledge of--and that comes principally from a vague recollection of seeing the movie one rainy afternoon in my sixth-grade Music Appreciation Class (a room filled, by the way, with people too musically-challenged or uninterested to actually play an instrument--I fall into the former category).

If musicals are the hyperactive pep squad of my professional calling (with their glassy-eyed enthusiasm and teeth-baring smiles), then operas are the varsity cheerleaders (undeniably more skilled, but nonetheless creepy).

I just have a hard time wrapping my brain around the concept of people spontaneously bursting into song... especially FRENCH SONG.

That's not to say I didn't enjoy myself. Carmen is arguably the most well-known opera in the world, and I definitely found myself familiar with a surprising number of songs. And I was genuinely surprised by the acting--at least some of it.

The show's lead and title character--Christina Baldwin--was phenomenal, as well as her sister, Jennifer Baldwin Peden, who played innocent Michaela. Don Jose, Carmen's romantic interest, seemed more in love with his own pain than with Carmen, and the rest of the cast was rounded out with passionate, incredible singers.

Logically, I know that opera and musical theatre are kissing cousins of straight theatre (if anyone can come up with the final piece of my "pep squad/varsity cheer" analogy I will be forever grateful), and maybe it's because I was rejected from the fifth grade choir and I'm bitter towards anyone with a talent for singing, but I just don't foresee a time when I view "singing theatre" as anything but an amusing and silly endeavor.

Friday, September 02, 2005


As the gravity of the situation in New Orleans becomes more apparent, lots of groups are reaching out to help. has set up an online tool for folks in the Southeast to offer emergency housing to hurricane victims who desperately need a bed and a roof. The aftermath of Katrina has created tens of thousands of newly homeless families, and there are not enough official shelters to meet the need.

You can post your offer of housing (a spare room, extra bed, even a decent couch) and search for available housing online here:

Hurricane Housing

From this morning's NYTimes, two Op-Eds regarding the hurricane's aftermath:

Can't-Do Politics

The Man Made Disaster

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

linky goodness

Need a break? Want to kill a few minutes with some fun nonsense? Check this out:

Eric Conveys an Emotion

Do you play poker? Want to help the victims of Katrina? Wil Wheaton and are hosting a few hurricane relief tournaments with all proceeds going to the Red Cross. Learn more here: Blog

Friday, August 26, 2005

arachnophobia pt. 2

I would just like to compare this entry from July:

I was almost killed by a bug...

with this from yahoo news:

Along came a spider...

I tell you, they're a menace!

Thursday, August 25, 2005

my name is summer and I'm a dumb american

You know, I always come up with excuses for not being more informed about what's going on in the world:

If I had more time, I'd read the newspaper...
I'm not usually around a t.v. when the evening news comes on...
NPR is always playing classical music when I turn it on...

But I think I can finally admit it to myself. The real reason I'm an ill-informed member of society is simply that being informed is so BORING. I mean really, if it isn't Jon Stewart giving me the news, I have no interest.

And I need to come to terms with the fact that given the choice to read The New Yorker or Entertainment Weekly cover to cover, I'll take the fluff any day of the week (and what does it say about me that The New Yorker is the only serious magazine I could think of?).

I'm not proud. But it feels like I've taken an important step in owning what I am, rather than chasing what I think I should be.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005


In a disturbing development, my neutered cat has taken to aggressive attempts at humping his female counterpart recently. I would be worried about her coming to bodily harm in his clumsy, needy attempts to mate if it weren't for the fact that she kicks so much ass.

Edgar, a 17 lb behemoth, might do some damage if his 17 lbs were made of something other than lard. He is also at a disadvantage when it comes to weaponry. The unfortunate habit of tearing up my parents' carpet when he lived with them led to the loss of his front claws many years ago.

Poe, on the other hand, is a svelte 9 lbs with an athletic demeanor and a full set of claws (and a good 8 years younger than Edgar). So far she seems adept at fending him off, but I worry about the psychological damage he might be inflicting. She's become skittish and surly, and she's taken on a flitting, untrusting gaze.

All this brings me to the question of why a cat, neutered years ago, would suddenly take to aggressive sexual displays? Nothing in his environment has changed recently. He and Poe have lived under the same roof for almost 2 years now and he's never shown this kind of interest before.

It just doesn't make sense, and it's really creeping me out. And I can't imagine what poor Poe is going through. How to explain why her fat, castrated, older step-brother suddenly finds her sexy?

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

I love guerilla film making...

We finished shooting Happy Accident this afternoon and Santiago and Jessica are taking the footage they have, editing this evening, and submitting it to the Amazon Tribeca Film Festival tonight.

We had such a blast working together--even if we did have to spend two days standing around in the ridiculous heat. I have a funny little heart-shaped sunburn on my chest (from where the v-neck shirt exposed my skin), blisters on my feet, and I'm sure I smell pretty ripe.

Still, I couldn't imagine a better way to spend the day.

Monday, August 15, 2005

happy accidents

I got a message from Jessica with Adams House Productions who said she'd like to use me in a short that Santiago Tapia is directing this week. Santiago is one of the first film directors I worked for earlier this year--a fantastic guy, works meticulously, and produces wonderful films.

I was psyched to work with them again, so I called back and left a message. In the mean time, I got an email from my friend Kevin, saying he'd been cast in a short film and that they were looking for a few more actors. I read further down and saw--you guessed it--it was the same film. He had a script attached to the email and when I opened that it turned out the writer of this film (called Happy Accident, by the way) was the director I worked with on The Hub.

So I talked to Jessica to let her know I was free, and since they were still looking for two more people to cast, I sent a few friends her way. Now it looks like the entire cast, save one, as well as the production crew are people I know. Awesome!

And here I was, bemoaning the postponement of a different project just two days ago.

I love when the universe sends me an unexpected gift like this--it's like finding a twenty on the street.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

A man walks into a talent agency...

Thom and I saw The Aristocrats on Friday and I have to say that it is one of the most vile, disturbing, demented, and hilarious movies I've ever seen.

If you haven't heard about it yet, The Aristocrats is a documentary about a joke comics share between themselves as a kind of insider's handshake. The opening and punch line remain the same but the meat of the joke is completely open for improvisation--as long as it includes some riffing on bodily functions, incest, bestiality, or any other depraved act you can imagine.

The movie captures more than 80 comics telling their own disgusting version of a joke known as "The Aristocrats." The point of the joke, which is in itself not that funny, is to see how far you can take it, how much you can get away with, how inventive you can get. Can you say things that in another context might get you thrown out of a party or even tossed in jail?

My favorites included Bob Saget, whose squeaky clean image was a perfect counterpoint for the unbelievable filth that came out of his mouth, Sarah Silverman, whose sweet, personal reminisces of incest end in the best alternate punch line of the movie, and Kevin Pollak, whose superb impression of Christopher Walken's version of the joke made me weep to see it end.

I found some of the retellings tedious and not funny. And more than once I thought, Surely they can't make this joke any more disgusting, only to be regaled with another nightmare-inducing version. And, really, I'm not proud of myself for laughing at poop and sex jokes for an hour and a half.

And yet... I think there's more value to the movie than some of its critics would have you believe. Underneath the seemingly endless versions of The Aristocrats, the movie gives us an understanding of the anatomy of a joke, an insider's look at the pure joy of comics performing for each other, and a glimpse into the depraved depths to which their psyches plumb.

Still, I wouldn't take my mom to see it...

Monday, August 08, 2005

rise and shine

I woke up at 4:30am and found myself unable to go back to sleep. The weird thing? I was in a FANTASTIC mood.

It feels like a fog has lifted. My cold--and the fatigue that came with it--is all but gone. I feel focused and driven and really excited about attacking the day.

I didn't realize how desperately my body and mind needed a break until I had no option but to take one. So thank you, sickness. You sucked, but I guess you did your job.

Friday, August 05, 2005

nah, they're not so bad...

I've had some time to reconsider my position on "people" and I'm on much better terms with them today than I was yesterday.

Last night, for instance, I went to see The Bad News Bears with a friend (his idea, not mine--though a surprisingly funny movie) and on my way into the theatre I noticed a security guard stop two kids outside the entrance. He was investigating something they were doing and just as I passed by, he broke into a full-bellied laugh.

"Go ahead. I want to see you try. You've got some balls, kid."

With a clearer view I saw the boys--both with pants and shirts about fifteen sizes too big for their scrawny bodies--attempting to conceal a 2 liter bottle of soda somewhere within their extra folds of fabric.

I passed by with a giggle and didn't get to see if they were successful in making it into the theatre with their secret stash or not. But that security guard made my day for letting them try.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

people suck

I submit the following:

Mother and son shot after traffic dispute

U.S. women name Paris Hilton princess

Bush: U.S. to Stay in Iraq Despite Deaths

"Dr. Phil" in for Five

I'm just a ball of fun lately, aren't I? I think I'm going through a post-Hal mourning process. I'll be back to my regular sunshiny self soon...

Wednesday, August 03, 2005


I turned down a back rub from my husband last night because I didn't feel well enough.

That's like the Cookie Monster saying, nah, I've had my fill of cookies, how about some carrots?

Being sick sucks ass.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

down for the count

The fact that my throat closed up in the middle of the night--making swallowing about as pleasant as a smack to the face--has led me to believe I might need to take more of a break than I initially intended.

I'm hoping I just caught Thom's cold and don't have, as my swollen glands are want to tell me, strep throat. In any case I'm on tea and hot soup at the moment, and I'm going a little crazy not being more productive.

I forced myself to sit and watch Merchant of Venice on pay per view, and now I'm trying to find some other suitably non-taxing activity without much luck. The meds I'm on are starting to make the screen blur, so I'll cut this short.

My parting thought: Al Pacino really likes to use accents.

Monday, August 01, 2005

the cast...

Because I know my mother would love to see this and it makes me happy, here's the cast and part of the crew of Hal Harry Henry. Check out the cool marquee...

a woman of leisure

We wrapped up Hal yesterday and I'm in recovery mode now.

I think I'll take what's left of today and do absolutely nothing that I should do. For the first time in months I don't have an immediate obligation to be somewhere, work on something, create anything, or help anyone out. And I'm taking a break, damn it!

...for a day at least...

So what will the world offer me today? It would be nice to find some cheesy thriller in a drugstore, go out to the river, plant myself in the grass and read the day away. Or I could go see a movie. I've been anxious to see Hustle & Flow or Mad Hot Ballroom. And for some reason the idea of writing a letter to my grandma sounds appealing... not sure what that's about.

A lot of my friendships have been neglected these past two months, and I should really remedy that. Of course, I'll save that for tomorrow simply because I'm not doing "shoulds" today.

I think I've figured it out: I'm going to grab my severely neglected journal, take it to my favorite cafe, and try to digest all this past week has held. I would do it here, but a girl has to have some private thoughts, you know?

Thursday, July 28, 2005

do I look like a hooker to you?

I had the strangest experience yesterday.

I was parking my car on Dartmouth Street around 11am when I was approached by a strange man who knocked on my window. I rolled the window down a crack and he said through a thick accent that he was looking for "someplace with food, to get some drinks." I thought it strange that he wanted drinks at that time of the morning, but I directed him to Tremont Street about a block away and told him there were lots of cafes and restaurants there.

He didn't seem satisfied by that answer and said, "Well you know, I just want to have some fun."

"Okay. That's probably your best bet. There are a ton of places over there."

But again, I could see he wanted to say more. Finally I watched him screw up his courage and say, "Well, I am only in town for today... And I would like some female companionship."

Completely creeped out at this point, I told him he should get the hell away from my car. He retreated quickly to my great relief.

Maybe he was asking me out on a date, or maybe he thought I was a prostitute. I don't know. It just seems to me that approaching a woman as she parks her car isn't the most efficient way to get yourself some "female companionship."

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

tech week

Well, we've finally moved out of the barn in Weston and are officially set in our new space at the Boston Center for the Arts. I was in the Roberts Theatre from 8am to 11pm today working on getting lights hung, flats up, set spiked, and lights focused. I climbed a 20ft. scaffolding and used a drill, and I feel very manly right now.

It was a great day, and if I could figure out how to download pictures from my camera I could show you what three of my castmates look like doing "the Dolphin" in unison (we were all a bit punchy by the end...).

I'm excited to be moving into the next phase of this production--and performances are only two days away. But the closer we get to opening, the more I feel anxiety that the end is drawing near. I'm going to be very sad to say goodbye to this cast and this play. It's been such a fulfilling process and I'm definitely not ready to let it go.

Of course, I'm getting a bit ahead of myself. I think I'm just going to try to be present in every moment we have together--on stage and off--from here on out.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

a question of bowels

Question: if you saw a poster for a study on Irritable Bowel Syndrome would you automatically associate that with whatever other images were around it?

This was my dilemma today as I was hanging posters for Hal around Kendall Square. It seems there is not a light pole to be found in that neighborhood that does not concern itself with the distressing malady of IBS.

I don't want people to see a Hal poster and think "poop." That's not cool.

The answer? I'm not sure... but I moved on to Central Square to find some poop-free spaces to advertise the show.

This blog entry has been sponsored by the Bureau Of Waste Enthusiasm and Liberation, or B.O.W.E.L. If you would like more information, please call your local plumber or visit this site.


I was almost killed by a bug.

Actually, it was a pretty terrifying encounter. I was driving along the highway when I glanced at my rearview mirror and noticed a spider dangling from the ceiling. I was understandably startled and did a little freak out--swerving uncomfortably close to the guard rail.

My panic increased when it started to slink down on a web towards me.

I tried to focus on both the road and the bug, which is just about impossible, but I managed to swat it away with my hand before my entire body froze up with fear.

Unfortunately, seeing a spider dangling from the roof of my car was only slightly less terrifying than being aware that there was a spider in an unknown location in my car. My mind raced. I tried to focus on the road and simultaneously scan the interior, but my grip was too tight on the wheel and my car jerked slightly side to side. I was suddenly aware of a thousand hiding spaces in my car, including my own arms and hair. My breath hitched as I realized I might have to ride the full 15 minutes to my destination with the unwanted passenger lurking somewhere unseen.

Just when I thought mental collapse imminent, I spotted the intruder on the seat next to me. Knowing where it was helped me gain some control, but what to do next? Let it sit there? Hope it doesn't move?

I knew I wouldn't be able to concentrate fully on the road until the little bugger was gone, so I decided to take action. Off came my flip flop, and with a single blow the menace was dead.

I tossed the offending shoe away (I admit, I wasn't thinking clearly), and had to finish the drive with one bare foot. A small price to pay, I think, for my renewed emotional stability.

I don't like killing bugs, and when I look back on it rationally I feel pretty guilty about the tragic end of that spider.

But in the moment, with adrenaline pumping and a paralyzing fear echoing in my brain, all I could think was it's him or me, and the little fucker is going down.

Monday, July 18, 2005

when Kevin met Crystal

And now, because I'm still awake I will share the very exciting news that I am soon going to have a sister!

No, my mom is not pregnant.

The new addition comes from the impending nuptials of my husband's brother, who is a good friend of mine and was part of my life even before Thom. This would be a great event, a happy event, even a noteworthy event on its own. But there is great cause for celebration as the woman he is marrying has been a close friend of mine since we were 10 years old!

Our adolescent musings, "We should marry brothers someday so we can be sisters," have actually come true. How does this happen? In what universe do you get to fulfill childhood dreams like this?

Needless, to say I am beyond happy that they have found each other, and that all of us will be forever linked together.

For all my scrutiny about the universe's workings, I think I've been cast a pretty nice lot.

If you'd like to check out the cute couple themselves, you can visit their website.

why am I still awake?

It's about two-ay-em here and I should be marching upstairs to go to bed, but I just can't bring myself to. I went out with Curt after rehearsal tonight to get a bite to eat and we ended up chatting for a solid two hours. That was fantastic, but it means my "winding down" time was pushed back a bit further and here I am way past my bedtime still wide awake.

I've been thinking about friendship a lot lately--how I'd like to have more close friends who live in my city. Adulthood hasn't been great for my social life. I've been unbelievably lucky to find Thom, but I think the karmic price for having such a perfect mate is social solitude in other respects.

My best friends at the moment live in California, Indiana, Georgia, NYC, and Germany. I can't exactly catch a movie or go shopping with them. For the most part they don't know my day-to-day gossip, and I sometimes forget vital details about their life, like who they're dating or where they're working.

These are people I've known and loved for years, and some of them, I'm certain, will always be in my life.

But it makes me wonder if I will ever forge lasting bonds with people I can actually see for more than a few days a year. Why is it so difficult to find new friends as an adult? Maybe it's because I don't have a day job or I'm introverted or I'm married. Maybe it's because I move so often.

Or maybe I'm just not that cool.

Increasingly, it feels like the search for new relationships is not only appealing but vital to my survival. So I go out with a cast mate for a late meal in the hopes that something will click, that a new bond will be formed. And I spill my guts into this stupid computer. And not a lot changes.

I'm lucky to have California & Indiana & Georgia & NYC & Germany. I just sometimes wished I had Boston too.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

I have a new favorite shirt

From the mastermind of Wigu comes this most awesome of clothing designs. It can be found here.

Now leave me alone; I have to go laugh at my shirt some more.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

save naked chimps! marriage rights for gay whales!

I don't consider myself an activist. I sign all the online petitions I agree with, and I give a little money here and there to liberal groups. But I've never been to a rally. I don't organize or protest. I'll freely admit that part of the reason is that I'm a bit lazy and ill-informed when it comes to politics, but the other part is the belief that every issue is shrouded in shades of grey. Activist groups are headed by people who see only black and white, who are so passionate about their cause they have difficulty understanding other points of view.

I don't consider myself a True Believer regarding any issue, and will even go so far as to say that most of the evils in this world are committed by fundamentalists (on any side).

However, there is one issue to which I am firmly wedded--one cause that will make me stop and listen, when otherwise I might find myself too "busy" to talk to the people with the clipboards--and that is animal rights.

I've been a vegetarian for eight years now. I'm not a card-carrying member of any group, but in my own way I effect the lives of our furry friends on a daily basis.

So, yesterday, when I see a woman at a table with a "SUPPORT ANIMAL RIGHTS" sign on Boylston Street, I go to talk to her.

"What's this about?" I ask in a curiously friendly tone.

"Well, we're lobbying--you do know what that means, right?" Hmm, I think, she seems awfully snippy for someone asking for help.

"It means to create laws," she finishes. I let it pass that unless she's a politician of some sort, she's not going to be creating any laws.

"We're asking for your help to support animal rights. What I need from you today is a ten dollar donation. Can you agree to that right now?"

Okay, that's a bit aggressive.

"Well, what exactly are you trying to do?"

And with a look that says she feels sorry for my unborn children she says, "We're creating laws to protect animals."

"I know that," I say, looking more closely at the table she's working from, "but can you tell me what laws you're trying to create to protect animals?" I notice a vaguely official-looking paper on a clipboard with no signatures and an article with a picture of a sad-eyed puppy and a large sign that says "SAVE HOMELESS KITTENS" flanking the front of the table.

"Look--" An uncomfortable expression comes over her face and she picks up her sign again. "I'm very busy here. Do you have the ten dollars or not?"

I look around to make certain that indeed, we are alone, and still my naive need to give the benefit of the doubt kicks in. "Well, if you want my ten dollars, you're going to have to tell me where it's going."

"I don't have time for this," she hisses and has already turned away from me. "SUPPORT ANIMAL RIGHTS!" I hear as I walk away, and only then do I realize it was all a scam.

I really hope that no other animal-loving do-gooder fell for her crap. I'd hate to think of that money going to pay for her next BigMac.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

feuding with Freud

Last night I dreamed I was bitten by a hungry dolphin. Oh, and there were some muppets there too.

Besides having some vividly weird dreams (watching myself animated in clay on some celebreality show...), the past few days have been awesome. Actually, the dreams have been useful in working through a few psychological quandaries. You might not think the presence of muppets in a dream could signify anything but having eaten a strange late-night snack, but believe me, my friend, there is a message to be had if you examine the felt and wobbly eyes closely enough.

I won't go into all the intricate, winding, wierd details of my dreams, but just know that they have helped me understand some of what has been making me feel blue lately. In the interest of my psychological health, here are my (re)discoveries:

  • I want to be famous.
  • I want to do meaningful, important work...that gets me noticed.
  • I want to work in a supportive, collaborative environment.

No artist wants to admit that fame is part of their goals, so I'm just going to put it out there. It's not the only thing I want (I wouldn't, for example, want fame if it meant being Anna Nicole or Paris Hilton), but it is part of my reason for being an actor.

I'm in this wonderful, challenging play doing meaningful, important work, but I'm in a role that is the definition of "ensemble member." And while there is no doubt I'm in a supportive, collaborative environment the horrible little monster of my ego is feeling a little starved at the moment.

I don't know if I feel worse because I'm not getting the attention I want or the fact that I want it in the first place. It needs to be okay to want fame, to want to be noticed. And it needs to be okay to not get what I want right now. But when I deny myself the wanting I just turn myself in circles and make myself sick.

I'm feeling better having realized all this, so thank you hungry dolphin and muppets and little claymation Summer: job well done.

Monday, July 04, 2005

taking stock

Things that made yesterday rad:

--Thom waking me up with breakfast in bed

--Sunroof on the Mini

--Melted cheese and tomato sandwich

--War of the Worlds kicking total ass

--Margaritas on the deck

--Invitation to a callback for Arcadia

--The Gorillaz

(If today could involve more cheese and sun I will be happy.)

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

where is my mind?

I'm going through a little emotional slump at the moment, which is probably the reason my posts have been so sporadic lately. But I just realized that I don't have to put on a happy face all the time, and this can be a great forum for working through what's on my mind...

I did the Stagesource audition* yesterday and I think it went fine, but my heart just wasn't in it. I realized at the last moment that I didn't have the 60 headshots they'd asked for (which in a way is pretty great considering I ordered 100 last August and I'd already used 55). So I took my sad little 45 headshots and handed them over, knowing some people in attendance wouldn't have one of me. It's not a big deal--there might not have even been 45 people there, but it's not something I would normally let happen.

Normally, I would have checked a month ago to make sure I had enough headshots so I'd have time to order some extra copies if needed. And I don't know if it's apathy or the fact that I've been so freaking busy lately that I can hardly think straight.

I'm looking back at my calendar and I think it's been three weeks since I've had a day off. And I'm usually not filming or rehearsing for more than 6 hours a day, but to not have a single, whole day that is mine and mine alone has really worn me down.

Part of me feels really horrible for complaining about this. I mean, I am in the extraordinarily unique position of not having a day job. I can't imagine what it must be like for people who are struggling with their artistic careers while holding down a full-time job. I am thankful every day for the life I live.

Yet--I can't negate what I'm feeling just because I'm better off than some people. (Everyone is better off than someone else in this world.)

I'm tired. And I'm sad. And no amount of "thanking my lucky stars" is going to make that go away.

I guess the positive side to all of this is that I'm very close to a break (4 whole days over the Fourth of July weekend!). Two of my film projects have winded down and all I have to focus on from now until August is the play.

Knowing me, just writing all of this down will probably do wonders for my mood. So thanks for letting me vent.

*Stagesource is a New England theatre arts association. They have annual auditions where local producers and directors can see hundreds of actors perform two minute pieces over a few days.

Monday, June 27, 2005


I am so ridiculously tired right now.

And hot.

It's like 10,000 degrees here and every moment outside just syphons the energy from me. Not that I'm complaining. I would much prefer broiling to freezing.

I've been working on The Hub for the past two days and tomorrow is my last day of filming. I've been having an absolutely fantastic time--the director, crew, and actors have all be wonderful to work with. But this schedule is starting to wear me down.

I was up at 5am this morning, which felt particularly painful since I'm not usually in bed until midnight because of Hal rehearsals. So we filmed the scene and were done by 8:30am, which was fantastic, but I came home and felt completely at a loss.

My morning schedule had been scrambled, and my brain felt the same. Thom and I went to brunch and decided to see the new Romero zombie movie, Land of the Dead. I was so scared through the entire movie, my body was tensed into a tiny little ball the whole time. I saw 80% of it through my fingers, and the rest I only heard.

Needless to say, it was not the best way to relax.

(Tangent: why do continuing going to every scary movie that comes out when half the time I'm so afraid I can't even look at the screen? It's not a pleasant sensation, to be tense and afraid, to jump at every noise, and to feel like your tired muscles have had a workout as you leave the theatre. The person who can explain that to me will earn a dinner out, my treat.)

Later I had Hal rehearsals, which were intense in a different way. We're in that stage of the relationship (the cast and director, I mean) where we've stopped being polite and started getting real (to quote the original Gen X reality show). You know, people feel comfortable enough to test boundaries so conflicts naturally occur--tonight we proved that theory in abundance.

Again, not the most relaxing situation.

Now here I am, updating this blog way too late in the evening because even though I'm running on too little sleep, I'm still wired from rehearsal.

This is dumb. I'm going to bed.

I hope all of you have sweet dreams tonight.

And don't get eaten by zombies.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

s is for schedule

I have a busy week ahead of me...

Yesterday, I spent the evening with the Six Fifty-Seven cast rehearsing the pilot--on the commuter rail. It was a fun exercise in guerilla theatre and inspired a new character to be worked into later episodes: Grumpy Conductor Man.

I have Hal Harry Henry rehearsals for the rest of the week at the Gateways Farm barn (hee hee, farmbarn) in Weston. We have a terrific, open-aired space set in a beautiful, natural surrounding, but again, bugs are an issue. And with no heater or air conditioning the schizophrenic weather hasn't been very pleasant either...

Finally, on Saturday and Sunday I will be filming The Hub in locations all over Boston. I'm very excited about the project, but I do need to start solidifying my lines.

That's the week in Summer, in case you were interested.

Monday, June 20, 2005

a world away

I spent the weekend on Maine's Frye Island at a working retreat with the cast and crew of Hal Harry Henry. This picture was taken from the deck of our host's house Sunday morning, and I love the way the sun reflects off the water. It almost looks like it could be the moon shining down.

I've been doing a lot of communing with nature lately, and what I've found out is that I'm very attractive to mosquitoes. In fact, I am a veritable buffet to our small blood-sucking friends.

Aside from the unsavory souvenir of mosquito bites, I came away from this weekend with nothing but good feelings. The cast bonded over meals, games, drinks, and work. I found out some surprising and beautiful things about the people I'm working with, and I have no doubt in my mind that this is going to be a challenging and rewarding experience.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

you can't handle the truth!

I have now officially done my civic duty. Unlike millions of Americans who every year beg, cheat, and lie their way out of it, I attended jury duty yesterday. Also unlike millions of Americans, I was actually excited about it.

That was, of course, before I found out what "jury duty" really is. It's not Law & Order or The Practice. It's not The Rainmaker or A Civil Action. And it most certainly is not Jack Nicholson and Tom Cruise.

"Jury duty" is waiting in a stuffy, windowless room for three and a half hours, not moving, not speaking, until the judge comes in and tells you they're waiting for a witness to come in and therefore will not need you today. Thank you for time.

At least I was out by 11:30am. I had the whole rest of the day to think of ways in which I might beg, cheat, or lie my way out of it the next time around.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

a picture's worth

I'm back from my week in the Tetons and I had an absolutely amazing time. I'm still processing all that the week held, so for now I'll give you a photo essay of my trip. There are a lot of pictures--to see them all click on the June archives.


The Grand Tetons...what a horrible place to spend a week, huh?

the view from our cabin

watch out for the buffalo walking down the highway...

a female grouse (these suckers are the size of chickens, just wandering around in the woods)

Horny male grouse showing off for the female. He chased his lady friend for quite a while--then they discreetly wandered off into the woods.

night in the Grand Tetons

mom, me, and our pet moose

Cool terraces at Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone

Did I mention how bad hot springs smell?

cutest niece ever!

husband and giant trunk

waterfall, dude

my attempt at an artsy photo of horses

My brother and I on top of a ski mountain (just above a 100 ft drop)

Freezing our bottoms off...

So long and thanks for all the fish!

Friday, June 03, 2005

a visit with The Man

So Thom and I are going to see The Insurance Man today to get our house covered for fire/theft. My in-laws' recent brush with having all of their possessions stolen (see my recent post) have made us a bit paranoid and forced us into this very "adult" measure. I keep thinking I've gotten about as "adult" as I can handle, but the world finds new and horrible ways to build the pressure.

For instance, our car windshield was recently chipped by a rock and has now developed a small crack. Instead of letting it go for almost a year (like the little fender dent we got last February) I've actually called my insurance company to file a claim, figured out a glass repair company to go to, and made an appointment with them. What is the world coming to when a procrastinator like myself feels the tug of such stuffy responsibilities and actually does something about it?!

On the other hand, one sign that I haven't completely turned to the dark side is that we're leaving for a week-long trip tomorrow morning and I've only just now pinned down a cat sitter for out pets. I think there's still hope for me yet.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

The Blog is dead. Long live The Blog!

Welcome to the Grand (Re)Opening of The Wyrd Sisters!

I've been keeping a blog on another site for a few months now (a mostly private affair, since I didn't tell anyone about it), but I think it's time to unveil my gooey, silly brainstuff to the world.

Certain limitations with FriendsterBlogs have led me to set up shop here, and I'm celebrating with a formal announcement to friends and family. Hello, friends and family!

If you'd like to see what I've been up to check out the archives. And, of course, I hope you'll be a frequent visitor here.

Thanks for coming to the Grand (Re)Opening, folks! Maybe next time I'll have a toaster for you.