Defining a man

Originally posted on www.fearlessinc.com.au

Question: What is a Man?

The definition of a man is an evolving concept. It is influenced by changing understandings of our physiology and psychology. There is also fashionable trends that can influence what it means to be a man. For a young man, this can be very confusing. Add into this mix, strong parental figures.

Toughen up boy. Be a man.

For me, my definition of a man was strongly influenced by my father, and observing the boys at school. I was born in a small community and began schooling in a small class environment. Part way through this, we moved to the city and I was “thrown” into large classroom environments. I wasn’t ready for it. The “culture” shock was rather overwhelming. The hierarchy, rivalries, power-games, bullying, and macho-ism was utterly unfamiliar. I withdrew becoming the outcast, or no-mates character that always form in such groupings.

I began observing, and not liking very much, my own gender. They were posers, acting “tough” which actually meant being mean, and often violent. There was a clear structure where the boys did not pick on the “tougher” boys, but in order to be a part of the pack, they had to show they were “tough”, so they picked on those that they saw as weaker. People like me, and girls in general.

My father’s solution to this was to encourage me to fight back. To be “tough” like them. After all, my dad was “tough”. Yet, I had watched these displays of toughness, and I knew that people got hurt. Even the ones being tough. I couldn’t understand why anyone had to be hurt in order to be to be a man.

My mother got me into self-defence and I think the intention was to teach me some fighting moves. I don’t think they realised that the classes they had set up for me were less about attack, and more about defence. I often wonder if, had my father known what Ju-Jitsu actually was, if he might have insisted I do Karate instead. So I learnt things like evasion, deflection, pain control, and most importantly, not getting angry or aggressive. The best form of self-defence is to avoid conflict if you can. If you can’t, find a way to end it quickly without getting aggressive. Disarm, restrain, and avoid. For me, it was a match to my evolving philosophies.

I endured the teasing, the bullying, and unreasonable hatred for 12 to 13 years, and I came out stronger for it. I still recall meeting ex-students from my schooling years, ones who had been so very cruel, and many seemed to be more emotionally uncertain of their lives then I was.

Getting it right, the first time.

My father was an impatient man. Trying to help him with anything was usually a path to humiliation and distress. If I couldn’t grasp a concept, or didn’t seem to be quick enough on an activity, he would often become frustrated, take over, all the while claiming I was “bloody useless.”

Men, it seemed, must enjoy pulling apart cars, being mechanical, doing laborious tasks, putting themselves in high-risk situations… basically tangible things. He would take me on site with him when he was working his own installation business, send me into the grid-work of exposed roofing supports of large work-sheds, drilling holes through concrete walls, working in extreme conditions like within the roof of someone’s home in the height of an Australian summer. He wanted me to take over his business.

I began to believe that I was never going to be good enough. I could never seem to get any sense of satisfaction from this. I felt like I was a failure, and that something must be wrong with me. I just wasn’t interested in doing the things we wanted me to do.

On the other hand, my mother was artistic. A potter, and painter. Her work inspired me, and I often tried to find my own ways of creating similar art. I tried my hand at drawing, and while I was only so good at it, I loved doing it. I loved taking pictures, and while opportunities were rare for me as a child, when they were there, I relished it.

However these pursuits would never make me a man. I’d never be able to make a career out of them. They were great as a hobby, but I needed to find a real job.

Ending the pain

Age 12, end of Primary School. The move to High School loomed liked a shadowy demon. The thought of high school, with the same punishment, the same kids, frightened me almost to death. I tried to take my life. I was deadly serious about it. I have my father’s rifle. I knew what a hollow-tip round could do. I couldn’t reach the trigger. My arms were too short. I became scared that my parents would be home soon. I quickly hide any evidence. Resolved to try again later, but fear of my father ever finding out stayed my hand from further attempts, and I endured.

I had even failed in that.

Creativity is not manly

I discovered theatre in my final year of high-school, or should I say, rediscovered. After a disenchanting experience at Primary School, theatre was never a thing I considered until it was re-introduced to me in my final year of high-school. I loved it. I wanted to do more. I wanted to study it.

I was told that I would never make a career out of it. I needed to find a real job. A man’s job. Look son, computing is the way of the future. You should do something in computing. This theatre stuff was a great hobby, but you need a real job.

Still very much under the sway of my parents, too scared to go against my father, I did just that. This would be beginning of a change in my perspective. I met new people who could see me for what I couldn’t see in myself, or was told not to see. I was shown that I had other choices. I slowly began to break the walls that I believed should define me. I began to define myself.

Redefining a life

I did as electives, theatre, philosophy, and creative writing. I was employed as a student tutor, and found that I loved teaching. Slowly, the social creature that had laid dormant for so many years, the being I had been in that small town so far away, was slowly revealed, under the layers of encrusting, hardening, and toughening up. Under the layers of false man-hood.

I continue to chip away the bits today, such is the legacy of my youth. My father has long since lamented the choices he made for me all those years ago, and likes to remind me that he was wrong, and that he he had encouraged me in my theatre, I could be something different than I am. Late comfort, but comfort all the same.

Everyday I learn more about myself for me, not to any standard or expectation of what I should be. I have my own definition of what it means to be Jeff. I am a man in physiology, but a person in psychology.

So if you were to ask me now what defines a man, I will tell you that lies define a man, because you’re asking the wrong question.

You should be asking what defines you.

The Romantic Role Model

Mansplaining: to explain something to someone, typically a man to woman, in a manner regarded as condescending or patronising.

I am not about to, so don’t worry, but I am seeing this term, and the actions of the definition therein far too often. It is the Counter Wife/Women-is-always-right movement I suppose, which is a little understandable, but only a little. I mean a real little little little.

The problem is using an approach that is condescending and derogatory is counter productive which ever side of the fence you sit. I fighting fire with fire only works when you know what you’re doing. When you don’t you just get a bigger fire, and on the internet, wildfires can spread incredibly fast.

I want to focus on a particular brand of Mansplaining, more of a topic in itself, and that is the “You-make-me-do-it” fallacy argument. You know, the argument that goes along the lines of “When you didn’t dress that way, lean over like that, talk that way, post nice pics, etc, etc, etc then I wouldn’t be this way.” Those arguments.

If you have read any of my earlier posts about control, then you’ll already know what I think in this regards. If you haven’t, here’s a brief recap;

No-one makes you do anything. You choose your own thoughts and actions.

What really gets me is the contrast between the cultural icons that litter literature (both written and visual) which clearly show that a respectful and considerate outlook is a far more favourable trait in a man then the lustful self-righteousness we see off screen. How can we see this sort of role model in our everyday entertainment, and yet not be inspired to be like said examples?

And here is where I connect back to acting…

Mr Darcy

Let’s take a character that many consider to the penultimate depiction of the ideal romantic lead. He starts of aloof, even a little high-and-mighty, and gradually comes to realise his faults and works to change his ways, becoming more present, aware, and compassionate. He is a no time lustful, nor untoward the female characters in his story. He is certainly not one to rest the fault of thoughtless actions upon the shoulders of another. He accepts that he is the master of his own presence. When he is struck with feelings of love, they are from a place of respect and admiration, not a desire to grope. He is aware of his feelings yet chooses to remain in control of himself and act with self-respect.

This character appears in mainstream literature all the time, even in some of the present day superhero-movie franchises. Please consider that many of the heroes in our lives share similar qualities with Mr Darcy; they are flawed but work to overcome, they ultimately respect others even though they can be a little cheeky about it, they are ultimately honest and reliable, even though they may not start out that way.

Even our real-life heroes exhibit  similar qualities, and when they don’t meet these qualities, or it is revealed that they have somehow been otherwise, they experience a rapid fall from grace. For example, Tiger Woods, Golfing phenomena and with all the hallmarks of an honest family man, master golfer, honourable and respectful… then it crumbled. People and companies wanted nothing to do with him for a very long time after his indiscretions were revealed, and while he has accepted his mistakes and worked hard to regain some of his former standing, but the tarnish will never be completely removed. Admired when he fit the image of an ideal man, then shunned when that image was shattered.

Yet many men in general seem to stick to this fallacy that their actions are not their own, and thus expose themselves for the weak and fearful creatures they are. This is not the attitude of a courageous man, to deny responsibility for the words and actions committed by their own physical bodies.

Be the Romantic Lead

When you mansplain away the responsibility for your own actions, you are playing the role of the arrogant coward. You are the Wickham, rather than the Darcy. The one whom is either reprimanded, forced to conform, or left with nothing.

Do a Google search into the qualities that make for popular, interesting, and even romantic men, and you will find the consistent appearance of kindness, respect, and self-control. You will definitely NOT find selfishness, arrogance, conceitedness, and a willingness to blame others for your actions. Those are traits usually associated with the second in command of the bad guy, not the hero.

Nice guys don’t come first is something that was said to me a lot growing up. Usually by other boys. To me it evokes ideas of driven selfishness in order to achieve a goal, not matter the cost to others, and that being “nice”, which I take to mean considerate, paced, and cautious, means you may mist the prize. Well, that may be so, but what is so great about being first anyway? While the winner of a race is celebrated, the one that stopped to help his rival is often remembered longer, if not who they are, but what they did at the very least.

And if the prize is at the cost of the respect I get from others, then you can keep your prize.

The act of kindness, consideration, and respect is the act that moves people. Sacrificing the self-glory, which apparently is so incredibly important, in order to help another earns more respect I believe. It’s why people love such stories, even if they don’t personally behave as such themselves.

If you are a guy who is truly keen to get the attention of a loving and respectful woman, then you would do well to look at the types of male heroes they respect in literature, and maybe try to find some of those same qualities in yourself. I can promise that they are there, you just have to choose to use them, and not just for a little while.

Throw away your childish pride. Take the courageous step. Take control of yourself and be a man.

The call of Nature

Following on from my most recent blog of a few days ago, I am reminded of a project I did back in my university days. My final year thesis was an investigation into the feasibility of teaching a subject on Creative Reasoning within scientific studies, and one of the points I discussed which was the value of right and wrong.

It is interesting how both my theatrical interests influenced some of my research, and how some of my research has influenced my theatre. This came into rather interesting clarity when, recently, I was discussing the complexities of character development with some nice young people, after one of my Quiz Night gigs.

The concepts of right and wrong are uniquely human. Echoing my previous blog, they are not natural. In fact, the concepts of right and wrong can actually be inhibitive to creative reasoning, which tends to work better when encouraged to break the rules. Creativity general works better with a measure of worth, rather than fixed points of success and failure.

One of the biggest struggles I have had to face as an actor is how to convincingly portray a character who is so completely opposite me in belief, and moral direction. Pantomime villains is one things, but real villains… that is hard. I don’t like paying simple lip service to a character, and hoping that will get me by. I need to make the character believable, and that means relate-able. I have to be able to understand the motivations if I am to convincingly portray them.

I believe it is the exceptionally rare individual who is able to see themselves as evil, and relish in that knowledge. Most would rather admit that they have done some pretty bad stuff, but that they are able to justify their actions somehow. How valid that justification may be to others is questionable, but to the character, it is enough.

You see, what is “right” and “good” is subjective. It is an opinion. When enough people believe in the same concepts of Right and Good, then it becomes a standard, or moral. Yet that does not make it ultimate Right or Good, because in reality, neither exist. Deeds that one may see as utterly evil, another may see as a necessary step towards an ultimate “good” according to their perceptions.

In nature, we see many examples of processes or actions that, under a moral code, would be deemed evil, nasty, or bad, but if you change the moral code, they can look very different. Humans, with the higher order brain matter, and the need for language and labelling, are the ones who create the codes, and therefore define what is evil.

But where do these perceptions come from?

This links back to early blog posts where I talk about choices and perceptions. The choices one makes in life construct the path that influences their future. Our choices are the decisions and reactions we make when faced with the effects of the world around us, and those we interact with. Sometimes, these choices can be subtle. Then again, they can be monumental.

In a world where there is no right or wrong, just one’s perception of it, anyone could be anyone. Had I not made certain choices in my life, I would be a different person. Maybe subtly different. Perhaps completely different.

As an actor, this is huge. I really could be anyone, if I could only understand the choices I would need to have made, and the justification I told myself to live with them. What would the moral code be like?

However, following this line of thought alone doesn’t create a character with depth. It would suggest that all characters were “satisfied” with their lot in life, and we all know that this is simply not true. We can all point to people, and maybe even ourselves, who are not “satisfied” with their lot. So there is something else at work here.

Our unique power for self-deception. It is our ability to lie, to others and to ourselves, that make for the tortured and emotional characters the populate our lives. Perhaps our past choices were based on lies, or half-truths. Perhaps it is our justifications that simply don’t have the ring of truth to them, no matter how hard we try and convince ourselves. Maybe we frequently gave away our one true strength, and let others choose for us, let them tells us their truth, and now live a life that contradicts that burning yearning inside.

The one thing that differentiates us from most other animals on this planet, is our ability to ignore instinct, and see choices. It is what gives us our ability to see things things that don’t exist, imagine fantasy worlds, or inventions. We are able to create explanations for the world around us by observing the world and perceiving meaning.

It is also one of our biggest weaknesses, because unchecked, it can run away from us and have us imagine things that can frighten, annoy, hurt, and enrage. Deception and creativity are very closely bonded, because they are both two sides of the same talent.

And this is the source of right and wrong. It is opposites, or extremes, but it us who have labelled these extremes as either right or wrong.

Maths is the only real subject within which Right and Wrong can have absolute meaning, and even that is human invention.

The Sins of the Father

Today, I am reminded of one of my previous articles, about my panic attacks. It dawned on me that it has been quite a while since I’ve had one… almost since I posted the article.

Yet I am confronted by another troubling issue. My dear daughter, who appears to be suffering from her own version of these panic attacks, and has further anxiety issues. Add this to her being at the age where everything is changing, confusing, and overwhelming, the poor girl must feel like the rope in a multi-directional tug-of-war.

4wg_3

Plus the divorce… Yes, her parents are getting divorced. Not your typical, aggressive, bad-blood type divorce, but the far more common, it-just-isn’t working and still friends kind. So while there is none of the agro, arguments, and frustration, this is just yet another thing that our daughter is processing. The pressure is sure on.

If it wasn’t for the anxiety attacks, the complete disregard for her personal hygiene, and 180 degree personality flip in the past year, I would simply put it down to teenage years. Maybe my Depression Radar is over reacting again, or I am being the overly concerned dad… I am worried.

We, her mother and I, have initiated an intervention of sorts. Nothing too extreme, just something the get her attention. When words fail, or fall on a closed mind, then action must be taken, for action speaks louder.

I have also tried to teach her some calming mediation, to help manager her feelings a little. She says it has helped.

It’s early days yet, but already, we have seen some changes in her. Positive ones.

If there is anything I can do to to prevent it, I will do what I can to help my daughter through the fog.

Lonely Voices

JeffRemembersSome days I remember
What I knew;
How it felt;
Who I was.

Lonely voices tell me
It was real;
It was truth;
It was me.

I recall a poem
I once wrote;
I once felt;
I once knew.

I sit with others in a crowded room.
I talk with others in a crowded room.
I laugh with other in a crowded room.
Always alone.

EmptyThat was then.
Times have changed.
That was them.
It was not me.

Now I see between them and me,
Lonely voices that hide within.
When at the time I could not see,
So deafened by the crowded din.

These days I am stronger,
Resilient,
Aware.
Yet…

Some days I remember
What I knew;
How it felt;
Who I was.

The Hard Road Part 6 – Someone Saved my Life

DarkI left off at a very dark place with my last post on this, and it got darker. My emotions slowly grew in strength and I struggled to maintain my rational self. I began fantasising ways I could end my life, and yet leave wife and daughter able to carry on financially. I thought that was the value of my character; the money I was worth.

Theatre was a small bright light, but even that was becoming a chore. Keeping up the pretence was exhausting, and I was tired a lot, even though I had substantially cut down how much I was doing. Still, I had made a great many good friends their, and I still enjoyed their company. It just wasn’t enough to cast light into the darker places of my thoughts.

ReactI lived like that for over a year, going through the motions, just barely containing the bubbling chemical reaction inside.

I had been directing theatre productions by this point in time for a few years. Owing to my cut-down commitments, I had only done a couple, but I had formed a close circle of friends whom had all connected on my shows. It gave some joy to see the friendships that formed, and still exist to this day, in shows where I was the one calling the shots. Even today, it is a warm and pleasant feeling to think on.

One from this circle managed to break through my walls, and reach me in a way no-one else did. They showed me something that I had lost; that I was worthy of appreciation, of love, and of respect. Their kindness, and faith in me, was uplifting, and in my darkest hour, dreadfully needed. While it did not clear the darkness within, it did stop it, giving me some room to breath, room to think. I had been on the brink, and now stood looking at what I was doing with clear sight.

Fighting Alone

ZombiesI had discovered that something was wrong with me years before, when I found the knife in my hand. I vowed then to watch and keep a check on it. I realised this time that what I was doing was not enough. I was trying to manage this alone, out of shame, fear. It took another to show me I wasn’t coping. I needed help. I needed knowledge.

When I was working with Curtin University, I had seen an on-campus counsellor to help me the pressures I was feeling, so I thought about starting there. My wife an I agreed to seek further advice for both ourselves, and as a couple. We did this for a number of years, and with a variety of services.

I also engaged in personal research, to find methods to cope with my feelings. I learnt a lot about myself.

I am a “touchy-feely” person, in the sense that I value and enjoy physical contact with others (don’t go dirty on me here.) I resolved, for the sake of my marriage and daughter, to find a way to manage this. I was committed and I accepted the implications of my choice. I knew that I would not be able to turn-it-off so to speak, but I wanted to find ways to manage my feelings.

What I discovered was far more. I read a wide range of texts including religious, philosophical, psychological, new-age, and so forth. I don’t think I have read more in my life than during this time. I was exposed to all kinds of methods, beliefs, and concepts which challenged so many things in myself. I began to question, not myself, but the perceptions that I had grown up with.

I found them lacking.

Find the entire Hard Road series here.

The Hard Road Part 3 – Side Track

I had been staying with my grandmother in Mousehole, just outside of Penzance. A small fishing village, but the Penzance city centre was a short walk away, and I went there often.

Life was good. I was seeing a lot of the Cornish landscape, and getting familiar with the lifestyle. I was invited to stay with various family members , and eventually went to stay with one of my uncles near Plymouth. He lived with his partner in a lovely little cottage some distance from the city centre. He was rather encouraging and introduced me to a theatrical group in the city, and took me to see some productions.

Then he confided in me that my grandmother was feeling a little stressed about my staying with her. I felt bad about this and debated what I could do. My uncle convinced me that I should go to London, find a place to reside, while I followed through with my application to RADA. It made a sort of sense, but I was uncertain of something, and couldn’t put my finger on it. Next thing I know, I’m packed and heading off to London, even before I had a chance to see anyone else. Even now, it seemed all a little rushed.

I was alone, and in the belief that I shouldn’t call on anyone for help. I can’t recall if I or my uncle had arranged for a hotel for the night, but after that, I had to find a place to reside. I was fortunate enough to find a place at a boarding house in the Aussie section of London. Yet I was out of my depth. I was confused, and felt incredible alone, regardless of the new friends I was making, and I was running out of money. Finding a job in London was more daunting than Penzance, where I had had a possible opportunity on the horizon.

LondonDarkMaybe my situation tainted my experiences somewhat, but I found London dark, and unfriendly. I didn’t seem to notice the grand architecture and monuments that dotted the city. I was consumed by my own dark thoughts of failure, fear, loss, and isolation. I became constantly panicked. I felt frustrated and constantly blamed myself for expecting to much, dreaming to high, and so on

It didn’t take long for me to make the decision to return home, tail between my legs. Even with some of my new-found friends giving me encouragement to stay, my resolve was total.

Now here is the interesting thing. As soon as I made that decision, I began to see London in a different light. I noticed the grandeur of the place, and for a day or two, I enjoyed being a tourist in London. I hadn’t even bought my ticket home, but my outlook was different. I still felt sad and disappointed that things had not worked out. I wrote to RADA and apologised for possibly wasting their time, and asked to be withdrawn. I later got a very nice letter, and offer of encouragement later.

I managed to get an incredibly cheap flight home (I think the travel agent liked me) and was soon home in Perth.

I then learnt the truth, which was stranger than fiction.

Find the entire Hard Road series here.

The Hard Road Part 2 – Big Plans

After switching my degree from a pure Computing Science degree, to allow me more freedom with selecting electives, I did a year of Theatre Arts. That year, something shook loose inside. I discovered a different side to myself, a side I rather liked. It was playful, confident, unashamed, and funny. The inner clown was released.

After uni however, it was “face reality” scenario. A strict dogma of accepting the fact that you need to get a job, and earn money. Voices not my own telling about what the real world was about. So here I was, with a BSc in Computing Science, struggling to find a job. All the big talk about how a degree helps you get a job was a flat-out lie. All the jobs I wanted to do said I was over qualified. Depressing.

I eventually found work through a retail trainee-ship scheme through the Perth TAFE. A retail trainee-ship where I was expected to attend a Retail Skills workshop, and work part-time with a retail employer. They, the employer, would get $1000 as a part of the program, and it would last a year. While a little demoralising, I actually enjoyed the work somewhat. I soon learned that with the exception of the managers and one senior staff member, we were all retail trainee-ship employees. I smelt a rat, and sure enough, at the end of the year, I was again looking for a job.

I eventually found employment with a PC Building company as a sales rep.I used my computing knowledge to redesign their sales and quotation process, shaving a process which could take up to two hours down to seconds. We were able to incorporate the quotation process into the sales discussions with clients making it almost seamless. Then the company went into liquidation, apparently deliberately.

This time, I made a big decision. I was going to the UK. During this time (about 2 years), I became more and more involved with the Community Theatre scene. Bouncing around between various groups, doing up to five shows a year. It was wonderful, and my passion seemed to know no bounds. I Auditioned for WAAPA. Three times for Dramatic Arts, and twice for Musical, but was knocked back each time.

I eventually had the gumption to ask why, and was told, and I quote, “I was too trained.” In WAAPA, as with most (not all) dramatic arts schools, they want students that have somewhere to go with their training. They don’t want the untalented, nor the overly experienced. They wanted untrained talent with lots of potential. Apparently, I was not one of these.

I considered NIDA, but a bigger idea formed in my mind; RADA in the UK. I had family in the UK. I didn’t have a family (that I was overly familiar with) in Victoria (Australia) which made NIDA less appealing.

So with the end of my second job out of uni, I packed my bags and heading to London. Ambitious, hopeful, and a little starry-eyed. And perhaps a whole lot naive. For a while it was great. I took sometime to visit family spread out across Cornwall, and they were all so accommodating. I did a little travelling , and started a little job hunting. I submitted an application to RADA, and visited some local theatre groups in and around Penzance. I was actually happy, and enjoying life. Then things took a decidedly odd turn.

Find the entire Hard Road series here.

—————–FLAT LINE—————–

A sense of numbness.
A quietness of the mind.
A stillness of the heart.
A touch of the surreal.

The world is changing,
revolving,
turning.
I feel motionless,
muffled,
isolated.

The transition has finally come.
If imagination had a heart beat,
Mine would be flat lining.
The calm before the storm.

The phoenix shall rise.

Taking the next step

It has been a month since my last blog. Things have been turning a corner with a lot happening. It has made it very hard for me to focus my thoughts on a blog post. So here I am now, trying to formulate my thoughts in to something that I can write about.

I have been directing/performing in a rather intensely funny piece of dinner theatre. The intention had been for me to only direct, and in the realm of theatre, initial intentions are often dismissed as circumstances change. (More details here “A Finger in the Dyke”)

Then I am offered an incredible opportunity. A career change that would see me moving away from the job that simply pays my bills to the job that is likely to reward my heart (as well as pay the bills.) It is a frightening thing to consider leaving a long-term, steady, and secure job, for one which pays based on performance. Some people can do brilliantly in these sorts of jobs. The challenge charges them with zeal. For me, these sales type roles have always filled me with dread, but then I was looking at sales roles in areas where I really didn’t have much of an interest. I had never before contemplated Selling Entertainment.

And that is the thing isn’t it? Doing what you love vs doing whatever because it pays. One is work, the other is … something else.

In physics, a force is said to do work when it acts on a body…

Work is something which acts on you, not for you or with you, and it often seems to be working against you. When I started around 2003, I had strong motivations for the job. After a while, I was able to find some measure of joy in the role, and for a while, there was no work, only progress. Then, after a while, two things evolved;

  1. the job was changing, moving away from the creative problem solving to a more maintenance and technical role;
  2. my external passions, that I had been enjoying as a hobby, had started to take a new and interesting direction.

My ability to focus on my job had been compromised. As a result, it became an effort to make myself do what was expected. The goals of the job were different to my desires. Truth be told, they had always been different, and now the gap between was a chasm. The job had become work because its needs, the needs of the job, were driving me, not me driving the job. The things that drive me from within, my dreams and passions, were not conducive to the job.

This is the reality that people are faced with everyday. This is conflict, or drama, at a very personal level. Movies like Falling Down experiment with this concept, making us wonder, what would it take for me to crack? We are a society of people doing work because… It is something we can all relate to, which is why it is a common theme in plays and films. Someone stuck in a dead-end job, punching cards, dreaming of a different life… And then the dream happens, for good or bad.

So while I am nervously excited about my new options and direction, I can also appreciate the drama that built up to it, and carries it.