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Quotespiration # 21: Jennifer Lopez

“Thank you … no one has ever shown me how to dream bigger and aim higher, work harder or love more what I’m doing cause I’m doing it with you. I’m so happy we’re on this journey together. … Lastly, I just wanted to say, all you little ones sitting on the living room floor watching the T.V. right now, just like I used to do when I was back in the Bronx..have faith, dream big, think big and know that anything is possible. You never know where you might end up.”

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– Jennifer Lopez (Acceptance speech for the 2014 Billboard Awards’ Icon Award; the first Latina and first female to ever receive the Billboard Icon Award)

Confessions: Letters to Old Lovers.

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I miss you.

If I could take back what I did, I would. I wish I hadn’t treated you so poorly, it haunts me to this day. Not always, but once in a while a memory will pop up and I’ll remember the good times we had. The excitement, the happiness. I miss your face. I miss your laughter. I miss the intimacy. I don’t miss your stubbornness. I don’t miss certain things you’d say and some of your opinions. But I miss your passion, and most of all I miss the things that could’ve been. The things we talked about when I was in your arms. The amazement we had in all the things we had in common. The jokes. The secrets we’d pass with a look, a smile over a table of friends. The beautiful beginning of how we met and the feelings I felt.

I thought to myself, “Surely he could not have feelings for me…surely, I’m not his type.”

What a wonderful surprise to realize I could be. The funny start we had. My hesitance and our first date ending up just being a conversation on a park bench as a result. What a great conversation that was, even if I don’t remember it. The random homeless man who walked up to us to tell us what a beautiful couple we were- what a promising beginning to a blossoming relationship. You were the first to ever make me breakfast. You bought me a green toothbrush after 2 weeks. I trusted you, and you I. You did some embarrassing things for me, for which I’m still thankful for. I miss having that face next to mine by the bonfire. I was the first girl to ever successfully make the watch The Notebook, which still makes me laugh today…though I’d also like to apologize for now ruining a perfectly good film for you.

But I was selfish and a coward. I’d just gotten out of a long relationship and was afraid to get into another one. Something in my head kept telling me to be single, to be on my own. I was afraid of committing, afraid of commitment. I’d been disappointed so many times and part of my heart was still somewhere else. I thought you were a nice rebound, you had to have been. I wasn’t ready. So I told myself I was sick of you. Listed the reasons why we would never work but at the same time reminded myself I was just being my usual self-sabotaging self. I tried to stop myself from thinking that way and some days it’d work, some days it wouldn’t.

I had to leave the country, it was the perfect excuse to get away. I promised you I’d come back. But I knew myself. The more time and space got between us, the easier it would be for me to let go. So that last day, I looked at your face. I studied it when we said our good byes. The way you smiled, the way your hair fell, the clothes you were wearing, how you made me feel. I wanted to remember it, I wanted it imprinted in my memory so that when I was away I wouldn’t forget. But it wasn’t enough..

After a while, I stopped remembering the good and clung onto the bad. And the harder you pushed, the closer you got, the farther I ran. I was almost back from my trip. A week before coming home, I was still telling you how excited I was to see you. It was the truth. Part of me longed for you, longed to see you. I was so conflicted.

So when I got back, I had the best excuses not to see you, they bided me some time. Until eventually I just stopped. Stopped responding and cut the ties. I couldn’t do it. I was too afraid to face my emotions and you were too promising. Too good. I knew if I stuck by you, you’d be too good for me to ever find a reason to leave. I couldn’t handle it. Not then. You tried and tried to contact me but I never responded. I still remember your final email. It had nothing but a question. I remember thinking to myself, I could still do this. I could still save this, come up with an excuse as to why I was so distant and we’d go back to how we were. Happy. It wasn’t too late. But I did nothing.

Since then whenever I saw our mutual friends, they would never tell me much when I asked, and I was always too afraid to ask too much. I didn’t have the right. One of them told me, maybe I could apologize. I toyed with the idea but it never came to fruition. How could I? How would I even approach it? Approach you? Why would you ever even listen? After spending however long you did to get over it, get over me- what right did I have to dredge it all back up again? There was one thing I always wanted to tell you. Right after asking your best friend about you and getting nothing in response, he tried to get me into bed. He pushed and pulled, his lips were on my neck. It made me sick, and I left. I thought of calling you, texting you about it. Shouldn’t you have the right to know something like this about a close friend? But I didn’t…because why in the world would you still care about what your friends did to me or not? Why would you still care about me.

It’s been 2 years now. I hear you’ve moved away. I’m with someone else now, and I’m so happy. I would even say the events of what happened between us led to me finding the man I’m with now. But perhaps my life could’ve gone either way. I still think of you. Not in a romantic sense, though sometimes I do still dream of you (as I’ve dreamed of many people I’ve come across in life), but in curiosity. What would have happened if I didn’t let you go? If I wasn’t so selfish, if I wasn’t such a coward. If I wasn’t so afraid of love and being loved, because although it was premature, I know in my heart we could’ve been great.

I’m also fully aware that it’s possible that my imagination of who we could’ve been might be greater than any reality could ever be.

I still contemplate reaching out to you one day. Telling you how I feel. But why should you care? You’ve long moved on with your life, and I don’t think I could bear a cold response…even if that is what I’d deserve. But let’s say in the perfect universe, we’re both single and meet again in the future, and if the natural spark were still there underneath all the hurt and hate…do you think you could forgive me? If enough time had passed, could we just start over and chalk it up as youthful stupidity on my part? Would it just be another chapter in our story? These are all the things I think about, when I think of you.

I wonder if you would laugh at how greatly I still think of you and us. I’m sure you’ve already forgotten me. What were we to you anyway? It was 2 years ago and you’ve moved on. In the grand scheme of things, we may as well have not happened.

But I miss you and I wish I could say I’m sorry. For my callousness, coldness. My selfish, cowardice ways. I’m sorry for ever hurting you. You’re a good person with a great heart. You made me laugh. I hope you’re happy, perhaps with a real love in your life that you deserve. And if you’re on your own, I hope you’re following your dreams. I’m not anybody to you anymore, but you’re still in my memories. Maybe we’ll meet again one day, if the fates will allow it and maybe you won’t want to brush me off.

Until then, I’ll just be that girl you liked once whom you never heard from again, who turned out to be a huge disappointment and terrible bitch. I know you probably don’t think very highly of me (if you even think of me at all), but I still think the world of you.

The Aspiring Actress.

Perks of Being a Wallflower + Logan Lerman

This doesn’t really have much to do with anything per se, but I just spent my morning re-watching The Perks of Being a Wallflower movie and just HAD to say this.

I’M IN LOVE WITH LOGAN LERMAN.

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And it sounds ridiculous even to me because I have never ever ever understood fandom and fan-girling over actors. I’m not one to really swoon and obsess, also he’s younger than I am and I know he’s kinda short. But damn. I CAN’T HELP MYSELF!! There’s something about his eyes. Sigh.

So there. I just had to get that out there. I love him. He’s awesome. At the very least, I would love to work with him one day. Girl can dream. It’ll happen.

But on a different note, Perks of Being a Wallflower is probably one of my current favourite movies. It’s the kind of movie I would’ve so connected with (even more) when I was in high school. It would’ve been nice to have that. It touched upon a lot of issues that I think many teens and young adults can relate to. Having to deal with your sexuality as a teenager and what that means, how prevalent sexual abuse is and its emotional impacts, emotional/mental abuse in relationships, physical abuse, experimenting with drugs, the loneliness of being a teenager or an outsider, the loneliness you can feel no matter how many people you’re surrounded by if they don’t understand you, complex relationship dynamics between friends, family and lovers, mental illness, rejection, the list goes on. I don’t know how he did it but the director (Stephen Chbosky) managed to capture such depth within the story and in all the characters that while I was watching it I felt like I was there, like those could’ve been my friends, that could’ve been me. It probably was.

I also don’t have enough praises to sing about the actors. Everybody did a phenomenal job. Not ever in a scene was a character flat, boring or one-dimensional and they also managed to stay believable throughout the whole movie- which is not always easy to do when it comes to such a relatively young cast. And even though Emma Watson’s accent does get a little shaky (also what American uses the word shag? I wonder if she ad-libbed that one), the emotions were there, and you could see that she was there for her co-stars emotionally through the vulnerable moments, and that’s really what matters at the end.

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Of course to tie the story and characters all together, the soundtrack was just impeccably put together. Every track held the essence of the scenes and just elevated the entire emotional impact of the movie for me. It took me along on its journey. In fact, I have the soundtrack on coloured vinyl. It really is amazing. You know a soundtrack is good when every song brings you back to an exact moment in the exact scene from the movie.

I also appreciate the fact that the movie took its time, it wasn’t rushed or dragged. I didn’t leave full of questions about apparent plot holes or character inconsistencies. So many movies these days have such great ideas but for whatever reason (actors? script? music?) just never quite arrive “there” with me emotionally. I know the impact they’re trying to make, but they often time fall short, the story feels empty. So it’s a nice to see a movie that does make it happen. A movie that isn’t just made for entertainment, but is a story that effectively illustrates and highlights parts of humanity, and manages to make it relatable to its viewers. That’s what movies are supposed to be about, aren’t they? Dissecting humanity and the human experience and giving us an up-close look.

I do wish, however, that they’d left Nina Dobrev’s abortion scenes in the movie. It showed such a sweet and touching dynamic between brother and sister. It also would’ve really helped in illustrating the chemistry between herself and Logan as siblings that I think was a bit lacking in the movie cause she was hardly in it. It’s also nice to see that Nina is capable of showing a slightly broader range and playing a character outside of the one on The Vampire Diaries. From what I understand this was a ratings issue, so I do understand. And there’s always the director’s cut!

So that is all I have to say. Perks is a beautifully vulnerable movie that I would recommend to anyone. If you haven’t seen it or read the book, do give it a go when you have the chance. I promise you, you won’t regret it. It also gives me hope as an actor that there is still meaningful material out there, and hopefully I’ll have the luck of getting to be a part of those projects one day soon.

Happy Friday, everybody 🙂

The Aspiring Actress.

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Quotespiration # 12: George Burns

“I honestly think it is better to be a failure at something you love than to be a success at something you hate.”

– George Burns (Award-winning Actor; one of the few entertainers whose career successfully spanned Vaudeville, film, radio and television)

I know it’s not easy when you have to worry about bills, rent, mortgages, food on the table, tuition or class fees and societal expectations on top of all that but I truly believe with the right balance and determination, you CAN find a job you enjoy that provides you with all that and be able to support your dreams financially as well. Sleep is for the weak anyway…(says the girl who was a hibernating bear in her previous life) :).

Ask yourself this, “How much do I really want this?” and “Can I live a full, happy life if I don’t have it or stop pursuing my dream?” If you can live a fulfilled life without it or through other things, then by all means. At the end of the day you are the one who has to live with your decisions, so do what you can within your means and do what makes you happy.

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Raaaaaaaaging Jealous Bitch.

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That would be me.

I recently read via the The Struggling Actress that when you feel jealous, usually that means there’s something else going on with yourself and that jealousy is a good indicator that perhaps you should be doing something more or differently than you already are. Apparently it makes a heck of a good motivational tool, too.

I can see how that could be.

So right now I’m working on this project that’s fairly cool. It’s an indie. The writing is decent! It really is. It could be CONSIDERABLY worse knowing the load of crap that’s out there..but the real selling points are the idea, characters and the whole premise of the story in general.

Anyway, on every project, there are always the more experienced and less experienced actors. Luckily, all of the actors attached to this project are very talented and I’m not just saying that. This blog is anonymous, after all. And on this particular project, I happen to float right in between experience-wise. Talent-wise, I’m obviously not one to be able to judge.

There is however a girl (there’s always a girl) who is a couple leagues ahead of me in relation to where she’s at in her career. For one, she’s represented by a pretty decent agency in the city. She’s got projects on the go, she writes her own material to star in, she’s extremely confident in who she is as a person and actor.

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Plus, I used to be the centre of the producer’s attention and now I’ve been cast aside! Okay, so that might be a slight exaggeration…but I’m a needy actress and sometimes that’s how it feels. Whether it’s actually true or not, which it probably isn’t. It’s just what my envy-fogged brain interprets. Especially when I’m now always tagged last in twitter mentions!!

I KNOW. I’m clearly insane. It’s TWITTER, for God’s sakes. WHO CARES! Right? I mean I highly doubt the producers seriously put into consideration who they tag first. These are just the kind of crazy thoughts that pop into my head when I’m feeling extra insecure. Ugh. Gross.

The result?

Raging, irrational jealousy that makes me hate myself and sometimes want to kick things and cry. Over-dramatic, you say? I’m an actress, I say.

Anyway, there’s nothing wrong with her as a person. It’s not like she’s arrogant or stuck up, which would give me the perfect reason to hate her. Nope. She’s perfectly nice, albeit a bit awkward in a Kristen Stewart sort of way. It’s part of her charm, really.

Sigh. Girl just really has her shit together (as opposed to myself, obviously).

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On top of that she’s acted opposite of a couple B-list actors in bit roles- yes, I realize it’s a little sad that bit roles get me this worked up but that’s the reality of it at this point in my career. And soon, she will be making her big television debut in a co-star role with (rumour has it) slight promise of becoming a recurring. An episode that she is pretty much the focus of for the entire hour. GAH. This is a very internationally popular series, by the way…some people around the world are already tweeting her about it. Sigh.

She is undoubtedly talented. It’s not that I’m NOT happy for her. I am! I’m also really proud of the fact that this is someone I also get to call a co-star. I whole-heartedly believe everyone in the acting community should be supportive of each other because if not us, who else? Who else gets it besides those of us who live it every day? We need all the support we can get! I truly do believe that.

And I have been supportive. Very. Extremely. Vocally. I’ve even recorded the episode ahead of time to show my support! …and critique for comparison…possibly. Look, deep down, my heart is in the right place! It’s just not always easy, but I’m working on it.

So those comments on The Struggling Actress got me thinking that I maybe..no, that I definitely need to step my game up. Jealousy stagnates you. It stagnates your spirit, all motivation and progress. You get stuck in this perpetual spiral of negativity and jealousy. Really, instead of asking myself, “Why can’t that be me?” I should be asking myself, “Why ISN’T that me?” and do something about it.

There’s always going to be someone better looking than you and more talented (sadly) but if you choose to focus on that, you’ve already taken your eye off the ball. You’ve lost the plot and set yourself back, while the person you are jealous of just keeps moving up and ahead in life. I’m my own worst enemy when it comes to this. But at least i’m aware of it.

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So now I’m here promising myself that I will consciously channel all of this raging jealousy and negative energy towards doing the things that are going to get me to where she is now (and beyond). Because god knows she probably worked her ass off to get there and deserves it.

Sometimes things are easier said then done…I’ll probably have a lapse in attitude when I watch said debut episode, but I’m determined to snap myself out of it and use it towards something positive. To quote a fellow actress/blogger (thank you):

“Don’t get jealous! Get awesomer.”

And even though the photo above talks about ‘good friends’, what it should say is “Actors don’t let jealousy get in the way of celebrating each other’s successes”.

Perfect.

The Aspiring Actress.