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October 31, 2004

Saw "Ray" Last Night

Wow.

Just wow.

"...and the Oscar goes to...

Jamie Foxx."

And well done C.J. Sanders. Your young Ray was stellar. We haven't heard the last of you, for dang sure. Wow.

Extra special to have seen the film in Atlanta. I saw Ray Charles perform here at the Fabulous Fox Theatre in December of 1992. Awesome. Wow.

Posted by bonnie at 6:13 AM

October 27, 2004

Time Warp

I've gone back in time. I'm in Atlanta and I've been in both my first neighborhood (Hapeville) and my second neighborhood (Sandy Springs) and everywhere in between. Tonight, Jonathan Spencer and I spoke at yourACT and after I dropped Jonathan home (inside the perimeter on Riverside Drive--so ITP to this OTP girl), I ventured south on Roswell Rd. just a tad and what did I find one mile from my hotel?

The Taco Stand. Wow. Athens has come to Atlanta. And I got to taste it.

The leaves are changing. October in Atlanta is one of my favorite things on the planet. So beautiful. Oh, if only the Braves were in the Series this year!

Oh, and in my Rainman Suite at the hotel, there's a spa tub the size of my kitchen back home. I never want to take a "normal" bath again. Ever. Seriously, I think I will only ever stay at Wingate Inns anymore.

Ahhhh. I'm having such a good time. I'm also eager to go home. That's like the best balance. It's before you start being so ready to get home that you're ignoring what a good time you're having and it's after you've been gone long enough that you really do miss home quite a bit.

Perfect. Yay.

Posted by bonnie at 7:43 PM

October 25, 2004

Leaving Nash-Vegas

I'm at gate B3 at the Nashville airport... will soon fly to my hometown (Hotlanta). I'm excited about all of the great people we found for this show in Nashville. Hope Atlanta is just as fertile ground for major talent. Damn my confidentiality agreement for preventing me from gushing about some of my favorite people here. Oh! I CAN tell you how much my dayplayers ROCKED. Suesie, darling, your daughter is the BEST! Thank you so much for the hookup. I'll work with Shannon ANY time!

Okay... thumb-typing is tedious. I'll blog again from the ATL.

Posted by bonnie at 6:19 AM

October 21, 2004

Nash-Vegas

On a quick break between auditions here in Nashville. Having a blast, finding great talent, really excited about some of the potential greatness for this show. Bummer is, we received confidentiality agreements today which means I can't say much of the really juicy stuff anymore. ;) Oh well... there's still plenty I can say and it's all grand.

Except for some inevitable personality clashes on my little "staff" here (and that's predictable stuff, due to travel, lack of sleep, and wholly different work ethics and communication styles), life is way wonderful here. Our day-players (local Nashville helpers) are great and super eager about the process and the show itself.

Tennessee Mornings with Charlie and Kelly on Fox 17 this morning went well. I think one of the day-players taped it, so we'll soon see how well. ;)

Can I just say how frickin' cool it is to audition a Grammy-winning accordion player who sings and polka dances while playing? Now THAT's Vegas, baby!

Posted by bonnie at 1:24 PM

October 18, 2004

How Many?

How many episodes of Law & Order can you watch in a row before you're over it?

I don't think I've found my number yet.

Posted by bonnie at 8:07 PM

The Publicist Called

Just got word from the E! publicist that I will be a guest on "Tennessee Mornings" at the Fox affiliate in Nashville Thursday morning. Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.

Helllllloooo, Regis!

Anyone in Nashville willing to set a VCR around 7am Central Time and keep it running 'til 7:30am? I'm supposed to be on-air for five minutes starting at 7:15am, but who knows with live TV! Oooooh, this will be FUN! Yay!

Heeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!

Posted by bonnie at 11:13 AM

October 17, 2004

Excellent!

Just tried out my new webcam.

Make sure you're on my Yahoo Messenger List if you want to be invited to watch the show in Nashville and Hotlanta. Right... if you want to watch casting over the next couple of weeks, send a "add to friends list" thingy to me on your messenger: CastingQs is my Yahoo handle.

Wooooo hoooo!

Hey, Chip, is there a way to do the little still-shot thingy on my blog's main page like you have? Or do I just need to upload stuff like regular ol' images.

PS--Hired Hannah today. Woo hoo! We are so gonna rock!

Posted by bonnie at 7:45 PM

October 16, 2004

Many Things

Catching up on a few things before hittin' the road...

Sex

I've realized that I was too young to enjoy "Sex and the City" when it originally aired. I am JUST the right age to really love it now that it's on TBS. Excellent.

LASIK

One week post-op note: dry eyes, yes. And the antibiotic drops sting. The steroid drops leave a "drip" taste in the back of my throat. After the one-week checkup, I was able to stop those drops. Good. Because those drops gave me a little ring of white around my eyelids and made my eyelashes crispy.

Two weeks post-op note: I use Refresh Tears three times a day, as directed. I don't have any of the sting/drip issues with these drops, nor do I have the white ring around my eyelids anymore. My eyelashes are less crispy.

I can tell that I feel nervous touching my eyes. I don't want to rub them because just the pressure of using a makeup brush to apply eye shadow seems to "stress" the area that was cut during the surgery. So, I'm very careful with my eyes.

The best thing about not having contacts in is that I'm sure, if ever my eyes are irritated, that it can't be due to my contact sitting weirdly on my eye. I spent so much time trying to "re-place" the contacts on my eyes to be more comfortable that it's clear to me, just by how infrequently I need to touch my eyes now, that LASIK was a great idea for me.

Brilliance

Last night, as the house band played "Sweet Child o' Mine" (and quite well), the 23-year-old cutie next to me said, "Oh! I love this song. It makes me wish *I* grew up in the '60s."

Now... how am I supposed to keep a straight face when the prettiest girl in the room reveals herself to also be the dimmest? Ah... Hollywood.

Book

Blake and I did another interview today. It was great. Awesome. And we tossed around a great title that seems to keep floating in as a theme in our interviews: "Fuck 'em." There's a point in which actors are saying to us, in their interviews, that they just had to let go of what happens in auditions and figure, if they didn't get the role, "Fuck 'em. I'll get the next one." I doubt we'd be able to sell a book with that title, but it's certainly worth a mention here.

Off-the-Record

Those of you who recall the drama over at my former employer (a major publication for actors) will be amused to learn that I am officially NOT to be interviewed or consulted for material in its pages. That's all I can say.

This is nearly as funny as the time I was asked to edit a piece I'd "contributed" to their new book... a piece I hadn't been told I'd "contributed," one for which I wasn't paid, and one for which I may not even be credited... I haven't checked the book to be sure.

Such a great establishment, over there. Yes... it's lovely to value being RIGHT in a political pissing contest over sharing the best information for your readers. That is sooo the recipe for success. *eye roll*

Handshake Deal

Faith, who is exec producing a series for VH-1 and who will fly to NY next week to pitch a new show elsewhere, has agreed to exec produce my talk show, when that time comes. That was Keith's idea. Good idea, honey. You are my Steadman. Faith is my Gail. Cricket Feet is our Harpo Productions. What fun!

Packing

So, as I'm packing for the trip, Archie has decided he'd like to stay in my luggage. Part "the love of the box" and part "don't leave me" but very cute either way.

Computer Stuff

Keith is about to go meet the guy who is a sales rep for OGIO. He's going to sell us a sample laptop backpack from his stock for $20 so that I can have a very stylish way to take my computer on the road without having both a clunky computer bag AND a purse. It'll be an all-in-one deal. Cool.

Also, got a very cool new toy. Yes... we bought the iSight web cam. This should be way fun. I'll make sure to post when you'll be able to sign onto Yahoo Messenger to watch the casting fun. Yippee! I love geeky toys! Yay!

I'll set it up after I take a nap. Definitely time for a nap. Ahhh. Love a day like this. When I get up, I'll do all of my Roxbury work, finish working on casting planning, and get more packing done. Yes, and set up the web cam. Heeeeeeee.

And now, for the fun geeky stuff that makes Kris crazy (sorry, gal).

The things I've done are in bold.

01. Bought everyone in the pub a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said 'I love you' and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Done a striptease
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Stayed up all night long, and watch the sun rise
15. Seen the Northern Lights
16. Gone to a huge sports game
17. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
18. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
19. Touched an iceberg
20. Slept under the stars
21. Changed a baby's diaper
22. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
23. Watched a meteor shower
24. Gotten drunk on champagne
25. Given more than you can afford to charity
26. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
27. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
28. Had a food fight
29. Bet on a winning horse
30. Taken a sick day when you're not ill
31. Asked out a stranger
32. Had a snowball fight
33. Photocopied your bottom on the office photocopier
34. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
35. Held a lamb
36. Enacted a favorite fantasy
37. Taken a midnight skinny dip
38. Taken an ice cold bath
39. Had a meaningful conversation with a beggar
40. Seen a total eclipse
41. Ridden a roller coaster
42. Hit a home run
43. Fit three weeks miraculously into three days
44. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
45. Adopted an accent for an entire day
46. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
47. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
48. Had two hard drives for your computer
49. Visited all 50 states
50. Loved your job for all accounts
51. Taken care of someone who was shit faced
52. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
53. Had amazing friends
54. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
55. Watched wild whales
56. Stolen a sign
57. Backpacked in Europe
58. Taken a road-trip
59. Rock climbing
60. Lied to foreign government's official in that country to avoid notice
61. Midnight walk on the beach
62. Sky diving
63. Visited Ireland
64. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
65. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger's table and had a meal with them
66. Visited Japan
67. Benchpressed your own weight
68. Milked a cow
69. Alphabetized your records
70. Pretended to be a superhero
71. Sung karaoke
72. Lounged around in bed all day
73. Posed nude in front of strangers
74. Scuba diving
75. Got it on to "Let's Get It On" by Marvin Gaye
76. Kissed in the rain
77. Played in the mud
78. Played in the rain
79. Gone to a drive-in theater
80. Done something you should regret, but don't regret it
81. Visited the Great Wall of China
82. Discovered that someone who's not supposed to have known about your blog has discovered your blog
83. Dropped Windows in favor of something better
84. Started a business
85. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
86. Toured ancient sites
87. Taken a martial arts class
88. Swordfought for the honor of a woman
89. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
90. Gotten married
91. Been in a movie
92. Crashed a party
93. Loved someone you shouldn't have
94. Kissed someone so passionately it made them dizzy
95. Gotten divorced
96. Had sex at the office
97. Gone without food for 5 days
98. Made cookies from scratch
99. Won first prize in a costume contest
100. Ridden a gondola in Venice
101. Gotten a tattoo
102. Found that the texture of some materials can turn you on
103. Rafted the Snake River
104. Been on television news programs as an "expert"
105. Got flowers for no reason
106. Masturbated in a public place
107. Got so drunk you don't remember anything
108. Been addicted to some form of illegal drug
109. Performed on stage
110. Been to Las Vegas
111. Recorded music
112. Eaten shark
113. Had a one-night stand
114. Gone to Thailand
115. Seen Siouxsie live
116. Bought a house
117. Been in a combat zone
118. Buried one/both of your parents
119. Shaved or waxed your pubic hair off
120. Been on a cruise ship
121. Spoken more than one language fluently
122. Gotten into a fight while attempting to defend someone
123. Bounced a check
124. Performed in Rocky Horror
125. Read - and understood - your credit report
126. Raised children
127. Recently bought and played with a favorite childhood toy
128. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
129. Created and named your own constellation of stars
130. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
131. Found out something significant that your ancestors did
132. Called or written your Congress person
133. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
134. ...more than once
135. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
136. Sang loudly in the car, and didn't stop when you knew someone was looking
137. Had an abortion or your female partner did
138. Had plastic surgery
139. Survived an accident that you shouldn't have survived
140. Wrote articles for a large publication
141. Lost over 100 pounds
142. Had a flashback
143. Piloted an airplane
144. Petted a stingray
145. Broken someone's heart
146. Helped an animal give birth
147. Been fired or laid off from a job
148. Won money on a TV game show
149. Broken a bone
150. Killed a human being
151. Gone on an African photo safari
152. Ridden a motorcycle
153. Driven any land vehicle at a speed of greater than 100mph
154. Had a body part of yours below the neck pierced
155. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
156. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
157. Ridden a horse
158. Had major surgery
159. Had sex on a moving train
160. Had a snake as a pet
161. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
162. Slept through an entire flight: takeoff, flight, and landing
163. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
164. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
165. Visited all 7 continents
166. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
167. Eaten kangaroo meat
168. Fallen in love at an ancient Mayan burial ground
169. Been a sperm or egg donor
170. Eaten sushi
171. Had your picture in the newspaper
172. Had 2 (or more) healthy romantic relationships for over a year in your lifetime
173. Changed someone's mind about something you care deeply about
174. Gotten someone fired for their actions
175. Gone back to school
176. Parasailed
177. Changed your name
178. Petted a cockroach
179. Eaten fried green tomatoes
180. Read The Iliad
181. Selected one "important" author who you missed in school, and read
182. Dined in a restaurant and stolen silverware, plates, cups because your apartment needed them
183. ...and gotten 86'ed from the restaurant because you did it so many times, they figured out it was you
184. Taught yourself an art from scratch
185. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
186. Apologized to someone years after inflicting the hurt
187. Skipped all your school reunions
188. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
189. Been elected to public office
190. Written your own computer language
191. Thought to yourself that you're living your dream
192. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
193. Built your own PC from parts
194. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn't know you
195. Had a booth at a street fair
196. Dyed your hair
197. Been a DJ
198. Found out someone was going to dump you via LiveJournal
199. Written your own role playing game
200. Been arrested
--
Bon
Weekly column at Showfax

"If I had known how popular going into casting would make me, I would've done it in high school." July 2003

Posted by bonnie at 5:27 PM

Favorite Newton

It's like it was meant for my new job!

What is your favorite Newton?

Hee hee.

Here's mine. I had to.

wayne_01.jpg

Posted by bonnie at 12:46 PM

October 15, 2004

√úbergeek

Should I buy one of these so that y'all can be "in on" the casting process while I'm on the road?

isight-400xlearnmore062303.jpg

Hm.

More to post after I speak at The Actors' Network tonight. I've scheduled a speaking engagement at yourACT Studio in Atlanta, while there. This is just getting so dang cool.

THANK YOU everyone for letting me know you're up for helping out as day players in Nashville and Atlanta. I'll be in touch this weekend (while packing and getting a ton of work done for Roxbury, getting a few Showfax columns written, and continuing publicity work for the casting). Oh, and we have another interview for the book tomorrow. Ack! How am I going to get everything done? Did you know that Google employees' girlfriends get $16/mo. membership to 24 Hour Fitness? I'm so there! Nightswimming, baby!

Gotta go.

Posted by bonnie at 2:41 PM

October 14, 2004

In with Producers...

...I'm in a meeting with a bunch of producers from E! and the whole casting staff for "The Entertainer" (some of them via phone from New York and Chicago). This is going to be REALLY fun. Getting very excited! It's a total vibe w/ these other CDs. This IS different than recruiting was for the three Fox shows I worked on. Those folks were recruiters. E! has hired full-on CDs in each city. I'm suddenly more impressed with my job.

We're going to have FUN!

NOW... I need to hire my day players. Any volunteers to do sign-in work and crowd control in Nashville and Atlanta?

More later!

Posted by bonnie at 3:07 PM

October 13, 2004

Revised Breakdown

Note: Open Call in Nashville is 10am-6pm, Saturday, 23 October at Molyneux Entertainment and the Open Call in Atlanta is 10am-6pm, Friday, 29 October at Professional Actor's Studio. See y'all there!!

THE ENTERTAINER
Reality Drama
For E! Entertainment Television, Kandor Entertainment, Live Planet, and Wayne Newton!
Atlanta/Nashville Casting Director: Bonnie Gillespie
Interview Date(s): 10/20-10/30 in Nashville and Atlanta
Shoot/Start Date: mid-November 2004
Location: Las Vegas
Pay Rate: TBD

Additional Personnel and Production Info:
Exec. Producers: Lee Brownstein, Howard Barish, Larry Tanz
Casting Assoc.: Jonathan Walker Spencer
Director: TBD

Submission Instruction:
Mailed submissions ONLY.
NO DROP OFFS!!

Submission Address:
"The Entertainer" Casting
c/o B. Gillespie/J. Spencer
5757 Riverside Dr.
Atlanta, GA 30327

NO PHONE CALLS/NO DROP OFFS

Special Notes:
This is for Nashville and Atlanta appointments/auditions ONLY. There will be other casting directors for Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Chicago, and New York. Submissions should be from talent local to the Southeast ONLY for this address.

NO DROP OFFS!

Show Description:
The King of Las Vegas himself, Wayne Newton, leads the search for Vegas' next star performer. Las Vegas is a town like no other. A 24/7 grown-ups' playground with hotels, casinos, and non-stop world-class entertainment. Vegas performers are some of the highest-paid, inveterate entertainers in the world. Making it in Vegas takes more than just talent. It's about determination, drive, discipline, stamina, charm, organization, and just plain physical energy. Mr. Newton will show us what goes into the making of a Vegas star--how and why the top talent makes it--and what keeps them on top. "The Entertainer" will bring together a diverse group of undiscovered talent who believe they have what it takes to be the next Las Vegas star!

Character Descriptions and Notes:
Seeking talented performers over the age of 21, any ethnicity. Vocalists, dancers, comedians, illusionists, and other exciting specialty performers that have what it takes to compete for an opportunity to appear in a major Las Vegas production.

Looking for people who have what it takes to become a Las Vegas STAR: entertainers who are multi-talented, charismatic individuals to perform in Las Vegas with Wayne Newton!

Posted by bonnie at 3:25 PM

October 12, 2004

Here's the Breakdown

THE ENTERTAINER
Reality Drama
Atlanta/Nashville Casting Director: Bonnie Gillespie
Interview Date(s): 10/20-10/30 in Nashville and Atlanta
Shoot/Start Date: mid-November 2004
Location: Las Vegas
Pay Rate: TBD

Additional Personnel and Production Info:
Exec. Producers: Lee Brownstein, Howard Barish, Larry Tanz
Casting Assoc.: Jonathan Walker Spencer
Director: TBD

Submission Instruction:
Mailed submissions ONLY.
NO DROP OFFS!!

Submission Address:
"The Entertainer" Casting
c/o B. Gillespie/J. Spencer
5757 Riverside Dr.
Atlanta, GA 30327

NO PHONE CALLS/NO DROP OFFS

Special Notes:
This is for Nashville and Atlanta appointments/auditions ONLY. There will be other casting directors for Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Chicago, and New York. Submissions should be from talent local to the Southeast ONLY for this address.

NO DROP OFFS!

Character Descriptions and Notes:
Seeking talented performers over the age of 21, any ethnicity. Vocalists, comedians, illusionists, and other exciting specialty performers that have what it takes to compete for an opportunity to appear in a major Las Vegas production.

Looking for people who have what it takes to become a Las Vegas STAR: entertainers who are multi-talented, charismatic individuals!

Posted by bonnie at 3:45 PM

October 10, 2004

Half an Episode and I'm Hooked

FitTV has this show called Health Cops, where people are "sentenced" to become healthier in 12 weeks. I'm so inspired and just by seeing the last half of the first episode of this rerun series. Hm.

I know it's because I'm stressssssed out about both Tuesday night's CSA Artios Awards (seeing hundreds of CDs, agents, and managers I haven't seen in a year... a year in which I've gone from a size 16 to a size 22) and the news that the show I'm casting IS, in fact, going to do a "casting special," meaning I'm on camera while holding auditions in Nashville and Atlanta later this month.

I'm not a terribly vain person. Ask anyone and they'll tell you, just like my mother, I have my one or two outfits and that's all I ever wear, mainly b/c I like it simple and comfy (see quiz results, below). But it's hard to have been soooo healthy and looking REALLY good at size 16 a year ago and then have my doctor take me off Atkins (my heart was in danger, she said) and see the weight just come back, back, back... and more. I've never worn a 22 before. The new clothes I bought for the job... yeah. There's no denying it now. I have a serious problem.

Okay, so this entry is not about that. It's about how inspiring that show just was. One of the ladies who is built roughly like me (she's shorter and weighs less by a stone, I'd say) was "sentenced" to a three mile walk every day. I can do that. I have to do that. Another woman who drinks like I do was "sentenced" to give up alcohol (and caffeine, which is not an issue for me, since I drink only water and vodka, pretty much). ;) So, I think that's a good goal too. Clean the system OUT.

Anyway, I'm not going to turn this into a personal challenge or anything, just saying that I've had EVERYTHING in my life start REALLY WORKING in the past few months and the ONLY area that's off kilter (and WAY off kilter) is my weight. So, it's a last-ditch shift in energy that's required here. The Excuse Me, Your Life Is Waiting vibe has CHANGED MY LIFE. And now, just as the book says, my body has taken on all of the negatives I've been dished all my life and it's going to take a mountain of energy to blast that energy back to positive.

Keith came up with a great analogy. He said, "Your body is like a sponge for that negativity, for that pain from your past. It's time to wring that crap OUT of it and let it begin soaking up the GOOD life that you NOW have." The past is over, baby.

I feel empowered.

Odd, how energy works, isn't it? When I would normally be crying my eyes out over the size of my ass, I'm instead filled with energy that will make all the difference. Any effort NOT coupled with the right vibe is futile. I've learned that with my career and relationships this year--AMAZING changes and monumentally positive. Now it's time for my body to benefit from that energy shift too.

Well, this turned out longer than I'd expected. ;)

Keith comes home in the morning. Yay! And I start my new job tomorrow. Keith's in at Google on Tuesday. And we have a meeting with our CPA (ugh). Wild life. Unrecognizably, astoundingly beautiful life. Time for the bod to match.

Posted by bonnie at 5:18 PM

October 9, 2004

There's more, but first, there's this.

I am Girl Next Door.
Click on the picture below to read more:
girlnextdoor.gif
Take the 'What Kind of Girl Are You?' quiz at CookingToHookup.com

Posted by bonnie at 1:19 PM

October 8, 2004

I miss Keith.

That is all.

Posted by bonnie at 7:48 PM

October 7, 2004

Update to New Job

Okay, so I've had the job all of one hour and now I'm going to Atlanta and Nashville instead of Atlanta and Chicago.

So... anyone got Nashville tips for me?

Posted by bonnie at 6:29 PM

New Job

Okay. It involves Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Wayne Newton, and E! and it's taking me to Chicago and Atlanta by month's end.

I haven't signed my start paperwork, so I don't know how much more I can say right now. But expect me to be very scarce 'round these parts for a few weeks while I find every singer, dancer, comedian, magician, contortionist, and fire-eater in those two cities.

Wheeee! I've never BEEN to Chicago before!

Any tips for cool hotels, great clubs in which to scout, and must-eats... lay 'em on me (as well as the names of the best agents, managers, and CDs in the area).

Oh YAY! This will be cool!!!

I'll miss you, everyone.

Posted by bonnie at 6:06 PM

Ramblings

My GAWD, people! Would you PLEASE stop teasing the noon news (and the episodes of "Extra" and "Access Hollywood" and "Inside Edition" all coming up later today) showcasing MARTHA STEWART'S LAST DAY OF FREEDOM?!? For the love of God, people, who cares!?!? Yes, okay, SHE cares. But COME ON. Give me some news!!!!!!

I am fascinated by the trend of carving cornfields to encourage folks to vote. Hell, I'll say it worked for me, if you'll buy that (yeah, like anyone with a list of YES/NO for all of the local propositions wasn't already planning to vote... duh). Check this out!

votecornfield.jpg

Cooool.

Last night was The Night of the Crazy Cats.

Thwok decided she wanted to sleep on my head. Now, I don't mean the typical "my head's on a pillow and the cat wants to sleep on the pillow too, above or beside my head." No. I mean Thwok climed up my face (I was sleeping on my side, so she started at my mouth and climbed my nose), walked a "kitty circle" around my ear and flopped herself down ON MY HEAD.

I got up to pee and Archie followed me into the bathroom. Now, if you've met Archie, you know he's not wee. He's HUGE. So, of course, he decides to jump up on the vanity/sink area (no big deal) and then to the frame of the shower doors. Yes. He wants to stand on the top of the frame of the 1.5"-thick shower doors and perhaps leap to the in-shower window.

Predicting disaster, I quickly wiped up and "rescued" my 20-pound furball from his own instincts.

Was there a full moon last night?

Couldn't sleep for a couple of hours and kept singing Bangles' songs in my head. Weird. Ended up dreaming of The Brothers Greenstein, which makes me think I should send a hello to my old high school friends to see how they're doing. Also dreamed of lots of sex with some stranger. Hm.

And woke up saying the line from "Will & Grace" after Jack gets a postcard from his mother, telling him he's "a black boy" (his father was named something Black, but the episode is all about Jack thinking he's African-American). "I'm a negro and my mother says 'black boy.'" Then I start hearing Jack's brilliant monologue about being in love with the coffee guy.

Bangles and JUST JACK. WTF?

Weird night, for dang sure.

Wonder what Martha Stewart's up to now.

Posted by bonnie at 12:26 PM

October 6, 2004

Y'know what's fun?

Getting to watch Al Franken's Air America on the Sundance Channel.

Seeing as the radio show is blitzed from all LA radio stations, this is a nice little somesuch.

Thanks, Judy Kerr, for the lowdown during breakfast a couple of weeks ago. I feel much more tuned in now.

Posted by bonnie at 4:27 PM

October 5, 2004

Ah, yes...

And thanks to the greatness of niecey Ash...

brian.jpg
Which Family Guy character are you?

...there's something to "go to bed on." Indeed!

Posted by bonnie at 2:34 AM

Google Goes Keith as Keith Goes North

So, Keith got a freelance job a couple of weeks ago (THANKS, ROSE) at Google. Then he got a call, asking whether he could come on fulltime and do the same gig in-house that he'd been hired to do from home, PLUS the freelance gig, if he wanted to make extra "nights and weekend" money.

Um, yeah. Sure. We'll go with a YES.

He got the call today that it was time for him to go in and do the "campus tour" (oh, did I mention that "campus" is just a few blocks from our new Santa Monica digs??). And, of course, he's headed to NoCal for more family stuff (see past few months of back and forth-ness for the gory-gories) in just five hours. Happy, the Google folks already knew about this (yay for Keith having told them he was leaving town, back when they interviewed him; yay for them remembering that), and the tour is set up for the day after the Artios Awards and, of course, after Keith's return to escort me to said awards.

I'm just so proud of him.

And more than that, I'm proud of us. We made a pledge to one another to do better with our "relationship communication" issues (see anyone ever on Dr. Phil's TV show) and this was the first time we got up to the "just a few hours 'til the departure" phase without a big fight over nothing (or over something; or over whatever would make me mad at him and less likely to miss him while he's up north). Very good. Progress in relationship stuff... and after only three years. Awwwww.

No, I'm actually touched by the fact that we're able to communicate so well so soon after pledging to do so. That's important and stuff.

I'll miss him.

Luckily, I have a bazillion things to do while he's gone. Interviews for the book, meetings for casting, setting up the panel for LMU, prepping for The Actors' Network, and finishing the unpacking of this home, here. Oh, and we MUST buy table and chairs (or bench or nook or whatever; this is our favorite). I may do that while Keith is gone. And then there's the EARNING of money, seeing as that's an outflow. Hee hee. So much.

THANK YOU, JONI for the coolest EVER belated-birthday slash LASIK-recovery package on the planet!!!! OMG!! An electric Hello Kitty toothbrush with bubblegum toothpaste, all sorts of books from my Amazon.com wishlist, and a great photo from our early early childhood together (wow; great stuff). You're the bestest, Joan!

And with that, I must sign off. No, really.

COMMENT away, if you want to come hang out or help with the never-ending unpacking tasks 'round here. I also need arm candy to various showcases and events. Holla! (Yes... I'm only two years late on the catch-phrase. Watch out... "bling" is about to enter my vocabulary.)

Posted by bonnie at 1:19 AM

October 3, 2004

20/20 L, 20/15 R, 20/10 Combined

That's the verdict, 24 hours after LASIK surgery.

I realize this is my first post-op post, so I've got a lot of territory to cover. Please bear with me.

First off, I WILL be posting the nitty-gritty, gory-gory details of the actual surgery in this post, since I know it's info that some folks would love to have.

I will warn you before it gets seriously detailed. First, the info that's not cringe-inducing and perhaps of interest to you all:

I CAN SEE! I have amazing vision with no effort whatsoever! How cool is that? Way cool, I'll tell ya!

Let's do the chronology.

Wednesday, I met with Dr. Khanna for the first time. Keith had already scoped out the office a few blocks from here to check into their "free screening" policy and what sort of payment plans they offered. He also had inquired about the doctor's experience performing LASIK on patients who, like me, develop keloids when cut (see the tattoo on my left upper arm, for an example of what one CAN do to "hide" a keloid, should one develop such things during "routine mole removal" in a doctor's office). Yes, I had read everything about how skin tissue and eye tissue are NOT the same and that there is very little risk of developing an on-eye keloid, but I still wanted to be CERTAIN that the surgeon I chose had EXPERIENCE (and, more correctly, SUCCESS) in this particular area.

Dr. Khanna is one of the friendliest, most pleasant people in the medical profession I have had the pleasure to encounter. He jokes around (but knows when to get clinical), he speaks in terms that don't judge or insult the patient, he puts everyone involved at ease (some of the biggest calming-down at times was required for Keith), and his entire staff is of that caliber as well. What a great group of people!

Okay, so I'm immediately put at ease while being thoroughly (and I do mean THOROUGHLY) examined for my candidacy for LASIK. Yes, it was quickly determined that my vision (a prescription of -5.25 in my left eye, -4.50 in my right eye), the thickness of my cornea, and the fact that my vision has basically stabilized (same prescription) in the past three years made me a good candidate for LASIK. If I wanted to schedule the surgery for Friday, that was an option.

Dr. Khanna had mentioned to Keith on Monday (when he was there scoping the place out on his own) that he perceived me to be a very cautious person, having done years of research on LASIK and, more recently (when I knew we could afford it and wearing contacts had become more of a pain than ever before) having done months of doctor-specific research as a part of my decision. Keith corrected him, "Oh no. Not Bonnie. She is meticulous. Not cautious. If she clicks with you on Wednesday, I believe she will sign up for the surgery Friday morning. She has done a lot of math on this topic. It's time."

See, I was first prescribed glasses for distance only (driving, concerts, movies, etc.) at the age of 16. A year later, my prescription had doubled and the doctor suggested contact lenses, as the glasses I would have to wear would be thick and heavy (and would be worn all the time, making headaches frequent--as a migraine sufferer, I certainly didn't need anything else to make headaches frequent). By the time I was 19, I was taken out of the daily wear soft contact lenses I'd had and put in disposables. This was due to the fact that I was beginning to suffer from the lack of Oxygen getting to my eyes while wearing daily wear lenses for so so so many hours (remember, when you don't sleep, taking contact lenses out for a couple of hours a day is not a lot of rest for your eyes, or cleansing time for the daily wear contacts, which develop protein deposits and all that good stuff).

I was in disposable lenses from the age of 19 to the age of 34 (now). It was only in my last six months that I'd begun having some serious problems with the lenses for the first time. I always assumed, when I heard people complain about their contacts itching or causing them to need eye drops, bitching about what a pain it was to put them in and take them out every day etc., that they were just wimps. I truly never had these issues. Until April 2004. And it's been a rough few months, lemmetellya.

So, after the karmic smackdown over living such a charmed contact-wearing life, I knew it was time to do this. I had gotten down to about four or five hours of contact wearing a day before I'd be in pain and have to take them out. And, I'd have to dispose of my disposable contact lenses (which allegedly last for two weeks) every three or four days, due to how uncomfortable they would become in such a short time of short periods of use. Very odd.

As you may recall from my entry in June on the subject, my eye doctor told me it was due to my AGING EYES that I was experiencing this discomfort. Pff.

Okay, so on Wednesday, I go ahead and set the appointment for Friday morning surgery. I cancel my plans for Friday (bummer) and do what I'm told: avoid bright sunlight (due to having had my eyes dilated for HOURS), limit computer and TV time, and do not put in contacts ever again. (Note: I had been told to remove my contacts on Monday when Keith returned from the doctor's office on his scouting trip, in preparation of my evaluation appointment on Wednesday.)

Also, on Thursday morning, I started a course of four-times-a-day antibiotic drops in each eye, per doctor's orders.

ON FRIDAY, I HAVE THE SURGERY (if you don't want to "read all about it," STOP READING NOW and pick back up after the next series of *** to show you it's "safe" for the less-detail-inclined).

***

Friday morning I arrived at the operating room, was asked to watch a DVD of a procedure being done, signed some more forms, had my eyes looked at one more time with one more machine (I couldn't imagine that they HAD any more machines than what were already used on me the Wednesday before), and was given an anti-anxiety drug of some kind.

Honestly, I would've liked to have that BEFORE having watched the DVD. Watching eye surgery is NOT an anxiety-free experience, no matter how much sex and violence you've subjected yourself to, growing up on a steady dose of American TV.

Anyway, I realized I wasn't talking or being social, which surely meant I was scared (and I was. I hadn't slept the night before and I really kept trying to envision the bliss that would be my post-surgery experience, but kept coming back to the creepy feeling of having "woken up" during a procedure on my bladder in 1973. It became very clear to me that I would like to be knocked out--way out--for this. Of course, that's not an option).

They put my hair up in a shower cap and put booties on my feet. My hands were ice cold, they told me, as they led me into the operating room, which had windows facing outside as well as a window into the waiting room, in case family wanted to watch, video tape, etc. Keith had assured me he would NOT be watching. I certainly understood.

Keith says I was in the operating room for 15 minutes, total. It felt more like 10 minutes to me, but I was certainly not paying attention to time, so we'll go with his estimate.

I was lined up underneath the laser, which I was told would be "charging up" in a few moments. I was told to look at the flickering red light and to NOT move. My head was placed in a comfortable, head-surrounding pillow, "as a reminder not to move your head" (um, okay), and then the laser's flickering guide light was covered by steel, while they charged up the laser (a series of very loud pops clicking off to the other side of the room).

The nurse was awesome. She told me everything that was happening, as it happened. I suppose that freaks some people out, but for me it was very helpful. One thing I would've liked to have been told (or, if I had been told, I'd have liked to have had it made much more clear to me) was that I would GO BLIND during the procedure. *shudder* It was damn scary.

Okay, lemme back up.

Right eye first. I'm given some anesthetic drops in both eyes and swabbed across the face with iodine, which I'm told goes nicely with my freckles. I try to laugh. My right lower eyelid is then taped to my cheek below and my right upper eyelid is taped to my eyebrow. The tape is shaped so that the adhesive *just* misses the eyelashes ("So you don't leave here with bald eyes," the nurse tells me). Then, a device that keeps my eye pried open is inserted into my eye, while I'm told to make a "shocked" face to give it as little resistance as possible (meanwhile, my left eye is taped shut, making the task of making that face a little tricky).

At that point, a clear tube is placed over my eye, making a ring around what I can see. I'm told this will be suction, which will cause some pressure. Okay. It's not "some pressure" and "suction" is putting it mildly. It's a full-on vacuum that makes me lose my sight... slowly. THAT was the scariest fucking thing I've ever experienced. I immediately went into a panic attack, clutched my necklace, and started weeping uncontrollably. I knew I had drugs in my system that could keep me from going into full-blown panic attack mode and I knew that this was just temporary blindness (It had to be, right?) but this was a freakin' scary experience. The nurse calmly told me that the worst was over and then my cornea was sliced. The device was something like a cheese slicer, so that the initial cut at the base of my iris was the "hard part" and then the slicer went up both sides of my cornea at the same time, to the top of my iris where they stopped making the cut, in order to create the corneal flap.

Quickly, cool solution was poured into the tube over my eye, washing down into my right ear. Suction was removed and suddenly I could see the flashing red light again, only not so clearly as before. This is due to the fact that my cornea was flipped "up" at the flap. Now begins the laser.

Pop-pop-pop-pop-pop-pop-pop... you get the idea.

I am told by the nurse that this will go on for 38 seconds. She tells me when we're at 20, tells me I'm doing great, hang in there, all of that. Tells me when we're at 10 and then at five she counts down to zero. The laser is off, the red light continues to blink, and I smell tissue burning. It occurs to me, of course, that there's a reason for that smell: TISSUE IS BURNING. Duh.

Next, the flap is released back into place and my cornea is "brushed" back into position using a swab with some adhesive on it. The surgeon's stroke is very delicate and precise, from what I can see of it. It is clear he is trying to even out the area where the corneal flap should fuse back to the rest of my eye and making sure there are no bubbles or creases of any kind. More wash (a couple of kinds). Then the device holding my eye open is removed. Then the tape (OUCH!!!!) and after that my right eye is taped shut as my left one has been.

When we start the procedure on my left eye, the nurse alerts me to the fact that there is something called The Left Eye Phenomenon, wherein our brains somehow feel that the left eye hurts MORE than the right, to do, due to the fact that we now know what to expect.

Fascinatingly, the left eye hurt much LESS, mainly because I knew what to expect and didn't go into it with a panic attack over losing my sight during the suction portion of the procedure. No crying this time. 41 seconds instead of 38 this time. Same everything else.

And then we were finished. My right eye was uncovered and I was asked to sit up and look out the window. Through a milky haze (from the drops), I could see the buildings outside. I was then asked to see what time it was. 9:30. "Could you see the time before?" "I could probably have seen that there was a clock there, but that's about it."

I know they wanted me to be very impressed and thrilled, but I was just relieved it was over. I looked to the waiting room and there was Keith. He had watched everything. He said he wouldn't, but in the end he couldn't not watch, he said. He won't talk about it though. He said it was really disturbing and that he'd talk about it LATER (like his experiences in the Marines--needs some distance from them before they become conversational).

I was led out of the operating room and into recovery, where Keith joined me. The room was dark and my eyes were closed. He sat across from me and held my hands. I cried like a baby. Relief. Joy. Anticipation. Mostly relief. I lived through it.

***

HERE'S THE REST OF THE STORY (if you scrolled passed those details and are coming back here to finish the tale).

I'm told to stay in bed as much as possible Friday, while I recover. I'm sent home wearing racquetball goggles and I'm given a bag of various drops and supplies, with instructions (thank goodness Keith was listening). My first post-op appointment for checkup is scheduled for Saturday morning.

I snooze on the drive home. Keith gets me home and into bed, where I fall asleep quickly after eating some popcorn. I tell Keith I'll want some Jamba Juice and Pizza Bread when I next wake up. He checks on me a few times. I'm in and out of sleep (and surrounded by kitties, who can tell I need them). A few hours later, Keith comes in with my smoothie and bread and asks me what I can see. I see, behind him, the bookcase. I can read the spines of the books. Whoa. That's weird.

I get a few calls from friends who are checking on me during the day. That was really nice. I stayed pretty doped-up-and-sleeping as much as I could. When I got up for longer than a trip to the bathroom, I walked into the living room, stretched out on the sofa, and turned the TV on, just so I could hear it (not allowed to watch it or use the computer or anything still). Everything was still a little blurry, but I could definitely see. I felt physically well enough to be out, if I'd wanted to chance it, but I really believed I needed to follow doctor's orders to the letter. (Note: Last night Keith said it's a testament to how very scared I was, the fact that I actually did what someone told me to do, 100%. Rat bastard. Of course, he's right. I did those antibiotic and steroid drops every few hours, as prescribed, and NEVER took off the goggles, otherwise.)

To get a restful night's sleep, I took two Excedrin PM. I just didn't want to wake up 'til it was time to see the doc again. Woke up tired and groggy from the drugs (Yes, Excedrin PM is that hard on me.) and Keith drove me to the doctor's office for my post-op checkup.

I told Dr. Khanna that I'd felt, on the drive over, as though my vision was better in my right eye than my left eye. He said, "Well, it could mean that you have BETTER than 20/20 vision in your right eye. Let's find out." Of course, I was assuming that the right eye was great and the left eye would need more work or something.

We begin the eye chart test. Right eye: 20/15. Left eye: 20/20. Combined... and he dials down the screen to the tiniest print possible (tinier print than I knew existed on an eye chart) and asked what I could read there. I said, "The center letter is a T. That's very clear." And he sat back with a laugh, "20/10!"

Wow. Now I was giddy.

He peeled a paper-like strip off of a tablet and dipped it in a solution, then brushed the tip of the strip at the base of both irises (where the initial cuts were made in the surgery). Then he used a fluorescent light to determine how my scar tissue was doing. He made some dots on my chart, showing a higher concentration of scar tissue on my left eye than my right (makes sense, as my left eye does feel a little less comfortable than my left--and that's a TINY amount of discomfort, I'll have you know).

I asked if I needed to come back on Monday, as that's what's in the literature, for a second post-op visit. "Oh, no," Dr. Khanna said, "You're healing GREAT. You come see me on Friday." Wow. That's so cool. He gave me the clearance to drive and everything (I chose not to, just yet).

I asked, "Hey, what was my vision before? Like 20/what?" And he said, "Unchartable. See?" And showed me where he wrote a notation that without corrective lenses I didn't register, that Wednesday. He said my contacts had actually been too low a prescription this last time. Not by much, but by some.

I popped on my new doctor's-orders sunglasses and Keith and I hopped in the car and drove to Ikea, where we shopped for two hours. Then the post office. Then lunch. Then home.

I still limit my time on the computer and looking at TV (feels a little like strain, if I'm on for more than a couple of hours at a time), which is why it's been longer than anticipated for this update to come (Keith figured I'd be online as soon as we got home from the doc, rather than SHOPPING). We went for a walk last night and I didn't see halos or stars or anything around street lamps or any of the night-effects they warn of.

I can see. Well. I feel great. I continue my drops as prescribed and I am taking it easy. I had a hard time NOT going to take out my contact lenses last night before bed. It was weird, being able to take this vision with me to bed!

I love it.

I've read a lot of accounts of people who say they don't regret it once they do it and they wish they'd done it sooner, etc. All I can say is, I'm glad I did it when I did it, where I did it, and with the surgeon who did the fine work. This is amazing. The best $3500 I've ever spent. It is really dang amazing to see this well. First time since the mid-'80s for cryin' out loud!

It's awesome to see.

THANK YOU for all of the wonderful, healthy-eye vibes.
--
Bon
Weekly column at Showfax.com

"Then again, I also heard a lot about the results of alcohol consumption on repressed cultures which is basically that you've never seen a obnoxious drunk until you've seen an obnoxious drunk who isn't allowed to talk about his or her real feelings or needs while sober. At least American culture leaves room for being obnoxious drunk OR sober!" -- Sweet Dawn on her visit to Singapore, 27 September 2004

Posted by bonnie at 5:42 PM

October 1, 2004

In a Few Hours

I'll be under the knife. And the beam. And the influence of anti-anxiety drugs (I could use some of those right now). We were called today to be sure everything is in sync and I'm not backing out and all that. Ack... I'm so so so so skeeeert.

But that's normal.

I'm also excited.

Did a career consulting session today, followed by another interview for the book. That helped keep my mind off it all. Then a nap. Then a date with Keith at El Cholo--nice walk to and from. *sigh* Now watching the Silver Munkee chase her tail around the apartment, much to the annoyance of the elder kitties.

I'll sleep soon. I need to stop using my eyes now anyway. Even if I don't sleep, I need to be NOT looking at a computer screen.

Okay. Here goes. It feels like jumping off the high dive at the Hapeville Pool. I was so scared I was shaking... but I did it. And never regretted it.

*holding my breath*

Here goes.

Posted by bonnie at 12:05 AM