October 14, 2008
I love our nonaversary. It's my favorite of all the random life events we choose to celebrate in our world.
So, what is it?
Well, our nonaversary is October 12th (originally 2002) and it's that's the date we were supposed to get married. It's the wedding day we'd been planning since December of 2001. It's the event we cancelled.
Yes. We celebrate the day we didn't get married.
Huh? Okay. Lemme back up.
So Keith and I had met online in April of 2001 and then met in person in July of 2001. (The "meeting in person" story is here.) And when Keith drove to my apartment in the Hollywood Hills, in a Ryder truck containing all of his possessions, he had an engagement ring in his pocket. But I wouldn't even know about it 'til he proposed under the last new moon of the year (and under the Hollywood sign) in December of 2001.
We spent the next six months or so planning our wedding. We made our list of guests and attendants, we found our location and put down a deposit, we hired our officiant (a friend who got ordained just for us), I tried on dresses, we even went to a "bridal expo" at the convention center. And all the while, we avoided as much family interference as possible. Ah, but that last one was pretty impossible. Damn. See, we didn't really want our wedding to be a big deal. We'd gotten great advice from dear friends about how to keep it "us" (having a certain number of friends assigned to bring a single flower, making up my unique bouquet--something we ended up doing in our actual wedding after all; having a certain number of friends assigned to bring a small sheet cake, making a patchwork quilt of flavors and colors for the dessert table; etc.), but well-intentioned people kept butting in. And our guest list kept growing.
By July 4th weekend, Keith and I were fighting so much it was unbearable. I was pretty sure this was the end of our relationship and it was time to part ways. We could not stop fighting about the wedding. And then, while we were pet-sitting, fighting all morning in someone else's bed, Keith sat up and said, "I have an idea. Let's call off the wedding."
< lucy >Waaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!< / lucy >
(Nobody likes hearing "let's call off the wedding," even if she's thinking the exact same thing.)
"Hear me out," Keith continued. And he went on to explain his theory that we weren't fighting because WE were broken... we were fighting because this wedding had become NOTHING like "us." It had become all about how not to piss off my dad by asking my stepdad to give me away and how not to piss off his mom by not inviting all of Keith's siblings and how not to piss off this friend once she learned we had invited that friend and on and on and on.
We no longer existed in our wedding plans. It wasn't our wedding anymore.
But here's where Keith got really brilliant. He said, "Let's just test this out. Let's SEE if calling off the wedding--not publicly, but just between us, just for this week--alleviates all of this stress we're feeling. Let's see if the wedding is the problem or if it's something more serious." And without telling a soul, we spent an entire week in bliss--knowing there was no longer this THING hurtling toward us. We had our "us" back.
And after that week was over, we made it official. "The wedding is off."
Everyone gasped and asked the usual, "Oh, no! What happened?" type questions. Wanted to know what this meant about our relationship. Was Keith moving out? Was I giving the ring back? Blah blah blah. "Nope. We're engaged and holding," we would say. And we stayed that way for three more years, before we finally caved and (on 48 hours' planning) got hitched in a "ceremony" that felt more like a "gathering" and was more about US than anyone else on the planet. Perfect.
So, what is this nonaversary thing?
Okay, so on October 12th, 2002, the day we were supposed to have been married in front of 200 people at a lovely banquet hall in the Marina, Keith and I woke up, kissed, and said, "Thank you for not marrying me."
That was our first nonaversary. And we've celebrated our nonaversary every October 12th since. We celebrate the day we didn't get married, because that decision saved our relationship.
And for our nonaversary celebration this year, we're off to our favorite spa for a quick but essential, romantic getaway. See y'all when we return! Happy nonaversary to all of us. ;)
October 1, 2008
The Secret to My Success
I was asked tonight (at my most amazing talk at SAG--seriously, it was one of my best-ever speaking engagements and it just so happens they taped it and will be putting up online. Oh, and I looked seriously cute too) what my secret is.
How I get so much done.
How I'm always working.
How I'm so damn happy.
I answered with my usual, "I don't sleep," response, which got the room laughing. And the audience member who asked the question said, "No, seriously. How do you do so much?"
And I said something about loving what I do and that makes it easy, and the not sleeping thing really does help and I'll probably try sleeping more in my 40s, and blah blah blah.
But on the way home, I said to Keith, "Honey, thank you. I couldn't do my job(s) without you."
And I'm sorry I didn't think of this answer before, because it really is the secret to my success and happiness.
I surround myself with the most wonderful people on the planet, we love to work together, we have fun every day, and it makes everything we do look fun (because it is). And that makes us all more productive and wonderful to be around.
My partners are the secret to my success. I trust my husband and could not--would not--do this career/these careers as well, as happily, as productively as I do if not for his support.
So there. I've said it. And next time I'm asked that question, I know the real answer and will share it. (But I'll probably still use the joke answer too. Just because everyone likes to laugh. I do. Every day. And that's a big "thank you" to Keith, as he's hilarious. Yes, really.)
June 16, 2008
How does the Gillespie-Johnson household celebrate three of its seven years hitched all formal and such?
By (temp) dying Quinn's hair blue, of course!
Just damn cool.
(Of course, Keith wanted to start the day by knocking me up and I find his love of that quest endlessly amusing. Keep at it, cute boy. If you can overpower The Pill, then God bless ya for doing so.)
(Still, I'm super happy to be married. Especially since I never thought I would be, this is way fun. On lots of levels.)
April 23, 2008
Seven Years Ago
Seven years ago, I met Keith online.
March 2, 2008
Tomorrow my Keith turns 50.
(Okay, not 50. 42. Same thing.)
We might be doing a thing. Shoot me an email or call his cell if you want to be involved. Or just show up at our favorite dining establishment sometime after 8pm and head toward the bar.
February 18, 2008
I don't like it.
There is one thing in this world my husband loves more than me. That's his son, Quinn.
So, when Quinn's mom and Keith divorced seven years ago, they worked out all sorts of neat things like "reasonable visitation" (which will, within the next couple of years--thankfully--mean Quinn comes to live with us and then goes to see his mom every summer for a few weeks) and weekly phone calls.
Weekly. Phone. Calls.
And one of the things Keith looks forward to more than anything in the world is his every-Sunday chat with his growing son. They talk about everything from what Quinn is doing in school to what's on TV, from the weather to pets, from responsibility to tough choices.
And Keith hasn't had a conversation with his son in a month now.
Yup. A dozen unreturned phone calls.
Messages left, week after week, "Hi, this is Keith. Just calling to talk to Quinn. Have him call me when he gets in. Thanks."
I get it. I know it's gotta be tough to manage a family and work and life. And Quinn's getting old enough that he may not even want to talk to his dad anymore. Fine. Let him tell his dad that. When Quinn is here and doesn't want to call his mom, we tell him it's the right thing to do... that she misses him and he needs to call her even just to say hello. That's good parenting. A nine-year-old is not in charge of things.
So, today, when Keith called and was told by--not sure--either a babysitter or Quinn's teenage step-sister that Quinn was in the shower and that he should call him back in 15 minutes, Keith did as instructed.
And when the next call went unanswered... repeatedly... Keith became sad. Not mad. Sad. Depressed. I encouraged him to call again. He did... repeatedly... and finally the teenager on the phone clicked over and said, "I am ON THE PHONE with my driving instructor! He will CALL YOU BACK!"
Tick-tock, tick-tock, it's getting more and more past Quinn's bedtime and no one is calling back.
So Keith calls again... repeatedly... and no one answers. No one clicks over. No one but me gets to witness the emotional torture Quinn's father is enduring.
Sadder still, I don't think anyone else fucking cares.
Sorry, Quinn's mom. I know you hate it when I blog about you or your family or your choices, but this is getting ridiculous. And it HURTS ME, as an adult child of divorce who CRAVED to know that her non-local parent even thought about her, ever.
So, I am blogging to make sure that when Quinn is ready to read about it, he can be sure--100% sure--that his father thinks about him every day, talks about him every day, fights to spend MORE time with him, is desperately sad that no one bothered to send us school photos this year, and CALLS HIM EVERY GOD DAMNED WEEK, whether he ever gets the message or not. Whether he is ever *parented* in such a way that calls are returned because THAT IS THE DEAL or not.
I remember being nine. I remember not wanting anything to do with my dad. And I remember how much it fed my soul to get to know that he loved me so much it made him ache to be away from me.
I don't want to think about Quinn, 30 years from now--crying like I am right now as I write this--because he was robbed of knowing how much his father missed him.
Posted by bonnie at 11:11 PM
December 29, 2007
I know I've written about Keith's various disorders before.
But today, he may have topped 'em all. (Well, actually it was yesterday that he did it. But today that I learned about it. So.)
See, yesterday we had this big-ass meeting about the film I'm EP-ing and that meant we needed to tidy up from the holiday hubbub. And the general dustiness. And life. So, we scurried around to clean and I went into the kitchen and stepped squarely into a large, long puddle of sudsy water trailing from our dishwasher (which Keith had run).
"Naturally," I thought. "We're in a hurry to get the place lovely and there's a leak in our dishwasher. Nice." Keith cleans it all up and the meeting is rockstar, as is the one I had today for another project. When I get home, Keith is back from the market and running the dishwasher.
B: "Oh, it's fixed? What was wrong with it?"
K: "Um. I had used regular dishsoap, rather than dishwasher detergent."
K: "That's why I have to run the dishwasher again. Now I bought detergent. The dishsoap didn't get the dishes clean enough."
B: "Of course it didn't. All of the water and suds came flowing into our kitchen floor!"
B: "Why did you run the dishwasher with dishsoap?"
K: "We needed clean dishes."
B: "And you couldn't just HAND WASH THEM?"
K: "Nah. I just ran the dishwasher with the dishsoap instead."
B: "HAVE YOU NEVER SEEN A SITCOM FROM THE 1970S?!?"
K: "I just didn't use enough! That was the problem."
Seriously. This is my life.
July 18, 2007
Okay, so... I meant to post a blog entry about 7/13 on 7/13, but I was kind of busy. Forgive the five-day delay, wouldja? Thanks.
So, on 7/13/01, Keith Johnson and Bonnie Gillespie met in person for the first time.
We had been flirting online for three months or more, by then.
< insert random geeky joke about online romances here >
We actually didn't meet through an online dating service, despite the fact that that's where everyone's mind seems to go, when we say, "We met online in April, 2001."
No. We met on a Yahoo Group.
Not a singles group.
I had been writing for an online humor magazine for a few months (you might recall my snarky column "Don't Get Me Started," in which I bitched about whatever was on my mind each week or so) and Keith had been single for a few months. He met the psycho editor of our 'zine in a gaming forum elsewhere and was invited into our world. (Basically, it went like this: "You've got a sick, twisted sense of humor. You should meet our writers and fans." And he did.)
So, one of the things that happened in our group email exchanges (all in front of the masses, as this was no more than a message board, to me--and you can see how I still do that stuff today to stay in touch with my readers) was that he mentioned wanting to explore "this acting thing."
I told him how to avoid scams, gave him some tips, blah blah blah (same basic stuffs I did for anyone looking to get into this crazy biz, back then when I had time), and we started emailing "off-group."
That's where it gets personal. ;)
Well, Keith had been dumped and downsized and had all sorts of free time to email these 24-page romantic sonnets and I swooned as any good southern gal would. ;) Bonus points for proper grammar and spelling, yo. ;)
And we flirted like mad. Because, why not?!? He was in Michigan, for cryin' out loud. I'd never even BEEN to the Midwest except to maybe change planes. What could possibly happen?
Well... I'll tell ya... here's what happened.
We fell in love. Yes. Online. And if you think about it, it makes perfect sense. We fell for each other emotionally, mentally, and spiritually (through emails and phone calls--and yes, he had the advantage, seeing my photo running with my column), and that meant the only way we didn't KNOW we dug each other was physically, and dangit that's the easiest one to figure out. You see each other in person and either you're hot for one another or you're not.
July 2001, I proposed a meeting. Keith was going to travel to SLC for a geeky computer thing and I, as a freelance employee of The Sundance Institute, could easily make a business trip out of the weekend as well. So, why not? Let's meet on neutral ground.
Neither of us wanted a relationship. He was still healing from a broken marriage. My mother had just passed away and I was rebuilding myself. It was a total rebound recipe.
But we decided... what the fuck. Let's do it.
July 13, 2001, I landed in SLC. This was pre-9/11, so I could meander through the airport for the three hours before Keith's plane landed. I walked past the lovely view of snow-capped mountains, saying to myself (or to Mom), "Sheesh! Can you believe I'm here?!?" and then I felt my mom say, "Yeah. Of course. I sent you here."
I had a posse of girls back in LA ready to execute extraction plans if he turned out to be a psycho. (Yeah, I had done a complete background search on him and his ex... and there were details most folks would be uncomfortable having available ready for the extraction plans, should I say the code word when I called in from the road. My girls said they felt like Charlie's Angels--and I loved that. Folks say, "Oh, that's so smart of you to head out having done so much research on someone!" And I say, "Hey, my mom didn't raise any dummies. Well... yeah, she did, but those are my brothers." Heh heh.)
Point is, I was doing something totally stupid (potentially), but I wasn't going into anything without a plan in place. (I'm all about the "what ifs.")
So, my heart is leaping out of my chest. I've just flown to another state to meet some random guy I've been flirting with online for a few months. OF COURSE, he's the last one to get off the plane. And he's in Dockers pulled up way too high and he's carrying three Microsoft manuals under his arms.
I'm in love.
It's him. I know it. Yeah. This is it.
Holy fuck. I'm looking at my future and here it is. Geekalicious.
So, he and I walk through the terminal holding hands and smiling at each other like we both have too many teeth.
He heads to the rental car counter and I head for the pay phone to make my first of the planned phone calls to "my angels." I say, "Oh my GOD. It's him." And Faith says, "What? He's crazy? He has an axe? Are you okay? Say the word!" And I say, "No, cousin. It's fine. I'm in love."
And we show up to our hotel room--YES, we had reserved two rooms in case we didn't click--and there's three white roses and a bottle of champagne.
Now, I don't know how much you know about Salt Lake City, but having a bottle of champagne in a hotel room is a pretty fucking pimp move, for that location. Bonus points for Keith, for damn sure!
Anyway, it was a lovely Friday the 13th, that July 2001.
And after that, I traveled to Michigan (McChicken) to meet Keith's son and spend a week in his world (at which point I established that there is not enough vodka on the planet for me to live outside a major city--I used to think that I'd grown up in a small town, AKA Atlanta, and then I realized that there are places in this country where I could *never* live simply because it is NOT important to me that butter is on sale at the Meier or that "scrapbooking" is a verb). I prepped Keith to audition for a play at the community theatre in Grand Rapids, and he booked the role and... well... the rest is a story for around October-ish.
Suffice it to say that July 13th is a pretty cool anniversary in my life.
It's when my decision to give a guy a chance lasted more than a few months (seriously--I've run every amazing guy in my life away in a really short period of time) and when a guy decided to give up a decade of one lifestyle to choose another that seems to be working pretty dang okay.
Yeah, it's easy to say he's got the good end of the deal, but y'know what? I'm grateful for Keith a whole dang lot. Yeah, he's a man-child, but what man isn't? I'm impossible to live with and fully expected to run him off within weeks.
Six years. So far, so good.
June 16, 2007
Newlywed No More!
So, you're only a newlywed for the first two years you're married, right? Well, that means we're finally an old married couple.
And since we've been together for nearly six years now, I guess you could say we've had "old married couple" status for a long time. ;)
That said, today is our 2nd anniversary. *beam*
For those who aren't familiar with the tale, let's have a little storytime, shall we? (Note: photos are in chronological order. Click to enlarge.)
Keith and Quinn were in Catalina. Our friend Cathy volunteered to take some family photos of us. We decided to choose Thursday the 16th, because the Beverly Hills Courthouse does weddings on Thursdays. We were going to secretly make these family photos our wedding photos. And no one would know but us.
But when Keith called the Courthouse, they were overbooked for the 16th. We would have to come back on the 23rd. But Quinn would be gone by then and we really wanted him to be with us as we wed.
So, while Keith and Quinn played in Catalina, I lamented the death of our covert wedding plans to our friend Aleta.
And, amazing woman that she is, she took it from there.
Within less than 48 hours, we had "a guy," a license, and a date at sunset. I emailed my dearest friends who represented successful industry couplings and said, "Show up at the bluffs seven blocks from our home at sunset on Thursday. Bring a flower."
And that is why my bouquet is so gorgeous. Everyone brought a flower (and several people put a lot of thought into it, choosing flowers from their home states or that were in their wedding bouquets or that signified something about our relationship or theirs) and lovely Anna tied 'em all up with a bow for me.
After an afternoon of photos on the beach, Quinn and Keith met us up on the bluffs and, at sunset, our friends stood in a semicircle before us and in moments, we were married.
(I wanted to use wedding vows from Beverly Hills, 90210--y'know, talking about how David got Donna after all these years because he waited for her all that time that she was a virgin--but Keith wouldn't hear of it. We were just gonna wing it. And wing it we did.)
We have two "rules" in our marriage. The first is that we trust that we each have the other's best interest in mind and at heart at all times. The second (and the one that I find far more important, really) is: "Always go for the funny."
Seems to be working just fine. ;)
After the "I Do" part of things, we walked around Santa Monica as a group until we could find a place that would accommodate our party. We held our impromptu reception at Ye Olde King's Pub and there was much champagne... and even gluten-free wedding cake!
When someone said that the best man needed to give a speech, Quinn looked up at his dad and asked what meant. (This had already been a long, long day for the six-year-old kiddo.)
After getting a quick tutorial on best man speech-giving (I think Keith said, "The best man talks to the group about the bride and groom and how much they love each other"), Quinn hopped up on a chair and glasses were raised.
"My dad and my step-mom got married today. And that means that they love each other and they will live together until they are both dead."
Perfect. Applause and tears everywhere. And then a quick, "Hey! That was my first speech!" from the brilliant child, who of course wanted to then give another and another and another. ;)
As I write this, Keith is flying back from the shoot to have our anniversary together tonight and then Quinn will arrive for his annual visit with us shortly. It is always our favorite time of year.
When I think about my upbringing (wherein survival and independence were values championed far above partnership and investment in others--since others can go away), I realize that every day Keith is in my life is a triumph of human connection over going it alone.
Thank you, honey, for being stubborn enough to prove me wrong, when I told you from the very beginning that I would drive you away within a few months.
I've never been so happy to say, "You were right." (And thank you for the lovely flowers too. You're one smooth hubby.) See you soon!
June 15, 2007
He gets a callback, so he takes what would be his local days off and comes back to LA.
While he's here, he gets another audition.
He's now back in NM and guess what.
A callback for the audition he happened to have while he was here for the other callback.
But this one he can't come back for.
What wonderful problems!
Okay, so I'm super happy. My stepson arrives next week and Quinnfest '07 is on. Woo!
Oh, and if you want to be inspired (or just bawl like a little baby like I just did), watch this video.
Hee! I'm happy.
June 5, 2007
Keith Appreciation Post
I'm exhausted. EX-hausted. My head is swimming with the busy-ness and intensity and non-stop-ness of my life right now.
And I miss Keith (who, for the better part of June, is OOT on a shoot). I miss him a whole bunch. Yeah, yeah, yeah... for all the reasons you miss someone when he's away, but I really miss him after this event at SAG tonight.
First off, it was an amazing event. Probably one of the best I've done there (and I've done a bunch. A. Bunch). But when you BYOM (bring your own Marine), you are guaranteed something that I've learned is pretty much essential (and which was especially essential tonight): crowd control.
See, I'm a Good Southern Girl. And that means (in addition to always offering guests a drink and always arriving with something for the host) I will always stay and talk for hours beyond what is necessary or even healthy, unless someone forces me to say NO to people and LEAVE the building.
And Keith is really good at helping me set those limits. Left un-Keithed, I will offer myself up forever and ever until there is nothing left and I am so drained I cannot see straight, much less enjoy the company of anyone still pawing at me.
I talked, non-stop, for five hours this evening. Even over "dinner," I was being asked about my career and my journey and my process and and and....
Now, lest you think I didn't enjoy the hell out of my time at SAG, let me set you straight on that right now. It was awesome. Seriously outstanding. And even though I couldn't even look at the box of cupcakes from the Bluebird Café (damn gluten), they were lovely. And the flowers are freakin' stunning. And about 90% of those in attendance tonight GOT me. That's about as good as it gets.
It's just when the very very very end of the night is me begging to have the last "all about me" questions (that are really being asked of actors who already HEARD and DISMISSED the answer I gave about this exact thing during the talk to 200 of 'em simply because they want "more face time"--boy if they knew how bad the impression they leave is, when they persist like this) asked while we "do a Sorkin walk-and-talk" to my car, I'm suddenly reminded in the most painfully obvious way that Keith is good for me. He's really, really good for me.
He's my entourage of one.
And I miss him.
PS--I've gotten into exactly NO trouble since Keith left town. I think karaoke night is in order, tomorrow. Who's in?
June 4, 2007
Just got home from dropping Keith off at LAX. (Note to self: Remember to move his car before the street sweeper ticket-writer does the evil lap on Wednesday.)
I miss him when he goes away. Even when it's for a really, really, really super cool thing like this. (And he's the type who'll let me brag about it in public, but not put it on my blog 'til it's all shot and he's back from location.)
But I'm proud and excited and will miss him a whole bunch...
...and will try really really really really really hard to STAY OUT OF TROUBLE as I catch up on various playdates with my friends. ;) *polishes halo*
It could happen! I could stay out of trouble the whole time Keith's gone. No, really! Stop laughing.
Okay. I need a nap. Big day ahead. Woo!
February 24, 2007
My husband's disorders.
I love my husband. Yes, yes I do. (I'm still amazed, daily, that I even got married, as that's SO not my thing. But whatever. I dig this boy and he's stuck around longer than anyone else I've shacked with--and believe me, I do my best to scare the boys off within a year [and I usually succeed].)
Keith has a couple of disorders that I must share, as maybe someone out there can commiserate and advise.
Keith will always: vacuum the floors (Yay!) and then take the vacuum cleaner back to the closet in which it lives. And park it. Right outside the closet. Seriously. Like two feet and a tiny thickness of DOOR away from its HOME. And there it will sit. As evidence that hunter man has killed the dust? Not sure. I really don't get this. It's so dang close to "put away." What IS that?!?
Expiration dates: Keith doesn't believe in them on things like eggs or milk. See, I'm super-hyper-obnoxious about expiration dates (except on drugs, because I figure if the Rx is yummy-fun today, it's got extra special magical qualities after its expiration date), so I want to throw out foodstuffs within hours of their "best before" dates (and typically on the early side of those dates). Keith, on the other hand, will just eat and deal with "it," digestively. (Lucky me.) But tonight, as Keith swam in the tub and readied his face for shaving, he asked me to bring him his razor and I offered up some shaving cream... mine. "No. Yours is old!" he said. Huh? What?!? My super cool girlie shave gel is awesome and what the hell does it matter if it's old? Define OLD as chemicals go.
"No. I need mine. It's newer."
Say it's more butch. Say it's better for hearty boy beard stuff (as opposed to my girlie creamy gel stuff made for fair-haired girls' occasional needs). But say it's NEWER and that's what makes it okay to use?
Anyone with insight, I'd love to hear it.
February 17, 2007
I just love this photo.
Keith is out of town and I miss him.
But this photo makes me think of him... and us... and our wedding. Y'know... since it's the spot where we got married and all.
Oh, and because of some drama that Keith and I have both faced in the past few years, I close with this lovely quote from Wayne Dyer:
Your friends are God's way of apologizing for your relatives.
Right on, right on.
January 21, 2007
Looks like you can tune in twice on Feb. 3rd, and then again on the 8th and 17th (and yes, he gets paid each time. We love you, SAG*).
Yippee! Watch for Keith as "blond man" (I kid you not, that's how the breakdown went out) and enjoy his treadmill scene. Yay!
*Speaking of SAG, anyone I know showing up to the SAG CAP Orientation I'm doing Tuesday?
December 16, 2006
Bless the bones of my right-hand man!
So, Keith shot a movie earlier this week. He also helped me with Hollywood Happy Hour, even though he was kind of over it (luckily, there were margaritas involved, and he somehow balanced the amount of help and the amount of tequila required to yield that help).
Then, we moved into high gear for prereads for a film I'm casting. We saw a total of 250 actors in two days. We've never done that before. Fewer no-shows than ever. More high-end actors than ever. And a few name-actor meetings thrown in the mix for good measure. It was a good week.
But here's the thing... Keith left Santa Monica tonight after having settled me in (yes, I've had about six hours of record-keeping/note-taking/replies to agents-ing and two hours of MySpacing--the latter of which is mostly for my personal enjoyment... but I still did my best to give some good feedback to actors we read this week--still owe myself a shower and some decent food) to go shoot ANOTHER movie tonight.
He just called from the set, reporting dry ice and smoke, wondering whether he should eat burgers or chicken. He'd been a wee bit moody around 6pm (when we'd seen the last actor and he was impatient with all things actor-related), but at 10pm, he'd had a chance to reflect, and he was actually really pleased with his experiences as my casting assistant and excited about the film gig. Again... bless his bones.
Also bless the bones of my lovely non-conjugal assistant types who work for lunch at PF Chang's (and occasionally a parking reimbursement) and the education that running camera (or working as a reader) can provide to a working actor.
I swear, I love my job a big lot. But I could not do it without the love of actors who crave "the inside POV," as they work for free (or in exchange of knowledge) and they really, really, really make my job a blast.
More casting announcements to come! thanks everyone, for the interest!!!!! It only gets better from here, baby!!
October 23, 2006
Happy Anniversary, Keith
Five years ago this morning, Keith pulled up outside 2240 N. Gower St. in a yellow Ryder van... engagement ring in his pocket.
Let me back up.
In early 2001, Keith's life as he knew it fell apart. His marriage ended and he was downsized from his computer job. On his 35th birthday, his wife, son, and dog were gone. Left to live alone in a large, empty house in Michigan, he took his suddenly abundant free time and began exploring soccer league, community theatre, and Internet groups. Online, he met the editor of a now-defunct humor magazine for which I was writing at the time. And at the suggestion of that editor, Keith joined the Yahoo Group that was the humor mag's staff and fan interaction forum. And he started to realize that I knew something about this business.
He started asking me about his interest in community theatre (he wasn't sure that's what it was called, though. He had done a play in college years before and knew he liked that, but really didn't know where to begin). I had been working for the Sundance Institute and Back Stage West, so I had plenty of advice to give (and just like I did when anyone would email asking for tips on how to get started, I would suggest this book or that book, provide information on his local film commission, warn him about typical scams newbie actors face, etc.). Eventually, we began flirting pretty hardcore. (What can I say? We're both big flirts.)
And by June 2001, we had come up with a plan to meet "on neutral ground:" Salt Lake City, Utah. He had a business trip (switching the bank's computers over in one of the last tasks before his severance package kicked in and he was officially unemployed) that would take him there, and since it also happens to be Sundance's home base, I scheduled a business trip too. And we met in person for the first time at the gate outside his flight (United 631) on 13 July (two days after my 31st birthday). We had already fallen in love emotionally, spiritually, and mentally. It was just a matter of answering the "physical" question. And really, that's the easiest one to answer. You're either hot for each other or you aren't. And because we hadn't had the physical distraction clouding our deeper feelings for one another in the beginning, we knew that was all it would take (and we would also be okay if the heat wasn't there).
But of course there was heat. And we flew me to Michigan after our weekend in SLC. I got to see Keith's life, meet Quinn, and prep Keith for his upcoming community theatre audition. I basically gave him a week-long course in Self-Management for Actors (long before there was such a book) and when I left, I told him he'd be moving to Hollywood before the year was up. A few weeks later, Keith came to LA and met my friends (all of whom were very protective of me and suspicious of Keith... many still feel the same way... heh heh). It was set. We knew he would show up here after his job officially ended and the play closed.
On 21 October 2001, Keith's play closed. He had shown up to the theatre in the yellow Ryder van, his house closed up and ready to go on the market. After striking the set, he said his good-byes to his Michigan friends and drove for 41 hours straight, ending up at the exact spot where he would propose (under the Hollywood sign) seven weeks later.
It's been an amazing five years, baby. Congratulations on all of your many accomplishments and thank you for your constant love and support. I can't think of a better way to celebrate than at the wrap party for the Hallmark Channel movie you shot earlier this month. We'll have a blast tonight, celebrating with your cast and crew. And every time they raise a glass to cheer the end of the project, we'll know it's also a toast to celebrate your anniversary... five years in Hollywood.
October 21, 2006
I love my husband.
That is all.
October 2, 2006
CSI: Miami (tonight)
Remember when Keith's paparazzo role went recurring?
Well, tune in tonight at 10pm on CBS to watch Keith on CSI: Miami (again). This time, it'll be a tiny blip at the end of the episode (but he earned overscale this time, so woo damn hoo).
Oh, honey... am I allowed to tell everyone about your Hallmark Channel movie of the week with Barry Bostwick yet? No? Okay. I'll wait. *smirk*
September 4, 2006
So, I come to bed (after turning in my column) at 4:30am and Keith wakes up to tell me about a dream he just had.
Seems he was riding a motorcycle but didn't have a helmet.
So he had Archie riding on the handlebars.
That way, Archie could swat away any bugs that were headed toward Keith's face as he drove.
There was theme music.
How cute is it that my husband dreams in buddy movies? And that his buddy is our cat?
September 2, 2006
My husband spent $100 on a book. It arrived today. He carefully cut into the package. Removed the book. Looked at it lovingly. Thumbed through it. (All of this took about 90 seconds.)
He then put the book back into the box and taped it back up.
"Sending it back?" I asked.
He labeled the box "Champions 25th Anniversary Edition" and put it up on a very high shelf.
"You don't even want to take a picture of it?" I asked.
August 24, 2006
I have been trying to post this entry for like 12 hours. (But it's been a way busy day, strangely.)
So, I woke Keith up at 6:30am (after having paced the floors for like an hour, jonesin' to get out of the house and exercise) and made him walk a mile with me to Denny's (for a reward made of eggs) and then, of course, a mile back. Uphill. Awesome. (Love this energy I have lately. Whatever.)
When we get home, Keith checks his email and has an audition for Medium*. New CD. New experience. Detective. One line.** Go get 'em!
So, I go to bed eventually. I lie in bed, doing Sudoku puzzles ("saving the world" as I call it, when I'm trying to turn my brain off and get tired enough to seal up***), and I hear Keith flipping through channels, sure he's clearing his mind of crud while reviewing the sides for his role.
At some point I begin recognizing dialogue coming through the TV and floating into the bedroom. "People put you down enough, you start to believe it." "I think you are a very bright, very special woman." "The bad stuff is easier to believe."
OMG. My beloved Marine Republican Badass**** is relaxing/prepping for his audition by watching a ROMANTIC COMEDY! Oh, I love him so much more just now.
*I promised myself I wasn't going to make fun of her teeth. But, OMG, can I at least make fun of her wardrobe? WTF?????
**At Industry RSVP earlier this week, an actor asked about the purpose in saying yes to one-line roles (and, of course, how to move up to bigger roles). I said, "What's the purpose to saying YES to an offer of a one-line role on a series? Um... it's a co-star credit on your resumé, a blip on your demo reel, and a couple grand once residuals are paid out. Duh!" Man! Actors can be sooo shortsighted sometimes!
***Back in my WUOG grad advisor days, I hung out with a good many cool kids (undergrads) who had lots of fun sayings, one of which (at last call) was, "I'm sealin' up." It was accompanied by hand gestures mimicking the closing of the inner eyelids cats have, displaying a severe need to go home and get to bed.
****If you'd like to see Keith's latest rockstar headshots, clink here. HAWT. Yeah, baby!
August 7, 2006
A-One... and A-Two... and A-...
What does it mean when you are such a pro and are so well-liked on the set that, the VERYNEXTTIME a paparazzo shows up in a script for the new season, you get the call?
Not the notice of the breakdown. Not the audition. Not the straight-to-producer session. THE. CALL.
Yup. My baby shoots his SECOND CSI: Miami co-star role on Wednesday. This one never went out on the breakdowns, never auditioned. Just came to him. BECAUSE HE GETS IT. (Oh, and this will be the 100th episode, so that means another kick-ass wrap party... this one right away.)
And, considering this news follows quickly on the heels of word that Keith is currently on avail for a frickin' Superbowl commercial, it's all just confirmation that IT WORKS. Showing up and being a pro WORKS.
(Review Keith's journey as an actor here.)
Again, honey, I am proud of you. Kick ass again. And again. And again.
June 28, 2006
Change of Plans
We are coming home early.
Keith is going to producers on The Shield today. Again.
June 25, 2006
My husband gives his sister his key to our apartment, in case she gets back to our apartment before he does. He takes my keys. I am in bed (this is at like 8am today).
Liz leaves for NoCal with Keith's key. Wouldn't typically be a problem except for the fact that we're leaving for Legoland in a few hours and WE HAVE TO LEAVE A SET OF KEYS FOR THE TERMITE GUY. And we now only have one. ONE.
So, do we give our one and only key to the termite guy and leave our home with no definite way to get back into it when we return in a few days? No. Instead, Keith gets to stop the prep for termite guy (bagging up food and medicine, packing up the kitties and plants for their stay at Aunt Dawn's, packing the three of us for three days out of town) and drive alllll the way across town to the one and only place in Los Angeles County that can duplicate a key for us on a Sunday afternoon.
If my family weren't so wonky, I'd have a lot to say about the family I married into. ;) But, y'know... glass stones and all.
June 18, 2006
Keith and Mini-Keith
Of course, Quinn is less "mini" with every visit, but I swear this kid behaves EXACTLY like his father, even though he lives 2200 miles away 49 weeks of the year. That *has* to be a pain in the ass to the ex. I mean... Keith's "quirks" are a pain in the ass to ME and I love the guy! Imagine having parted ways and still having a daily reminder of the power of genetics! Phew. Bless Quinn's daily parentals. They're doing a kick-ass job. This is a very good kid.
Keith was at Nelson's overnight (babysitting Lois while Nelson hung out with Meryl Streep in Manhattan) and Quinn asked to stay here with me. No problemo, except the kid was up at five ayem... and I went to bed at four. *yawn* Methinks I shall sleep a bit tonight! Tomorrow is a big day.
Anyway, I spoke with each of the dad-types, and Quinn said hello to each too. Nice thing about a kid in a non-traditional family unit... he doesn't question the fact that we call two dads for me on Father's Day. When Keith returned from Nelson's, the boys played soccer for hours in the park while I finished my column and finalized casting decisions on the two shorts I'm casting. We then walked "forEVER," (says Quinn) to get to Color Me Mine to paint a dragon for Quinn and a cooking spoon holder for Dad.
We always celebrate Quinn's half-birthday during his visits, so we made that event today. It was a big celebration with way too much walking for Quinn's liking, although he did enjoy seeing the Chicken Car parked up on Lincoln. You know the one. It's like an Angelyne or a Dennis Woodruff sighting, but for the 310 exclusively. Gotta love LA.
Thankee, everyone, for the love re: Pissy Little Mood. She's gone. Gotta love the water sign gals! As soon as I get a real understanding of how a negative statement can resonate through us like a pinball locked between bumpers while a positive statement can be forgotten the instant it's said, I'll share the meaning of life with everyone. I promise.
And now that the boys have gone to bed and I have another few hours of work to finish, the eternal question: Do I open that bottle of wine?
May 5, 2006
Leave Town, Book a National
Most actors know this rule: Leave town and you'll get that big phone call. And you'll have to make a big decision: Return home for this shot at something big or keep your plans in place. Yup. Keith booked out with his agents and manager earlier this week... his cell phone rings today... and he's headed to the airport right now. THAT's a professional actor, baby!
April 15, 2006
Keith's wrap party for season four of CSI: Miami was wonderful. I loved getting to meet his friends from the casting office (and one keyrayzii boss... wow), listen to the interns joke about goosing Bruckheimer (and how much he'd like it), schmooze with TV people, and connect with Sunil Nayer (who wrote a great testimonial for Acting Qs, but whom I'd never met 'til last night).
The best part was--as is a "best" at most TV wrap parties--the gag reels and best-of-season video. The gag reel was effin' brilliant (the kind of thing that would be in heavy rotation on YouTube--with all of the pranks and jokes among cast and crew) and the best-of-season video rocked mainly because Keith's scene made the cut!
When they started the video, I whispered to my finally-no-longer-nervous hubby, "Hey, maybe you'll be in this," which was met with, "No. I didn't shoot with any of the series regulars; just the episode's bad guy and dead guy." So, when his mug was up there on the big screen, I squealed (and I think Keith kind of teared up a little bit).
It was a great night. Congrats on your first network co-star wrap party, honey. You done good! (Tune in for the show May 1st.) Woo!
March 23, 2006
Keith's First Co-Star
In a town where getting your FIRST co-star role on a network series is one of the HARDEST things to do, Keith Johnson, my actor/hubby, has done it.
Congratulations, honey. Now get to the set! CSI: Miami is waitin' for ya!
March 6, 2006
Because nothing is so rad as a totally awesome '80s party, I have these bitchin' photos to share.
Cookie Crisp cereal, Pop Tarts, Twizlers, Tootsie Rolls, Tab, Bartles & James, Fresca, Pabst Blue Ribbon, Boone's Farm, Pop Rocks, Lik-m-Stix, Fruit Roll-Ups, Atari, paint pens, Mad Libs, Play Doh, "Fletch," "Raising Arizona," "16 Candles," fingernail decals, blue eyeshadow, leg warmers, gummie everything, and all-you-can-eat PB&J, baby! It was truly a trip in the wayback machine. Fast times, dude. *giggle*
PS--And the winner for best post-Oscar blogging goes to CoCo. Seriously. Go read that.
March 3, 2006
Why is it, that when I have a desire to sleep I stay up all night, and when I need to stay awake (just for another 90 minutes, even), I am suddenly exhausted?
Oh, and why do I have to stay up? Because Keith is SURE that Liz told him she was flying it at 8:35pm. Of course, she emailed me her itinerary, which says she's flying in at 8:35am. So, either:
a. Keith heard wrong and Liz will be waiting for him at the airport 12 hours earlier than Keith had planned to be there,
b. Keith didn't hear wrong and Liz doesn't realize she needs to be on an airplane in just under three hours,
d. Keith didn't hear wrong and Liz has changed her flight since having emailed me the itinerary,
e. Keith didn't hear wrong but Liz has since figured it out and, in sending me her itinerary was hoping I'd make sure Keith had it right too,
f. or something else entirely.
I'm too exhausted to try and figure it out.
Point is, it is now my job to call Liz at 5:15am and make sure she's headed to the airport. And, if she has another 12 hours before she's due at the aiport, I get to hope she can fall asleep easier than Keith can, if he is ever woken up too early.
Happy birthday, my love. You get to sleep and I'm going to deal with this terribly typical Johnson family miscommunication, even though I really really really want to come to bed. You also get eleven new audition shirts. And a yummy cake. *giggle*
February 28, 2006
I happen to really like this episode-naming-pattern post over at TV Squad.
And this. A bunch of ol' white guys sitting in front of Chip's initials. Yes, one of them is Darren Star.
I think I will attempt sleep now, seeing as I have a big ol' couple o' busy-ass days stretched out here in front of me, one of which begins in about three hours. Happy faT to the Uesday. All of my audition sides are now officially über-organized. Yes... I will do anything to avoid starting on taxes. Ugh!
PS--on Friday, someone who lives in my house will be 40. Hint: it's KEITH. Oh, wait. That's not a very good hint, is it? Hmm... okay, I'll see if I can come up with a better hint after I get some sleep. *zzzz*
January 24, 2006
Shows I've Never Seen
Snaked from the greatness that is TV Squad (sign up for the feed, if you haven't already. Plenty of goods).
George Lopez Show
Two and a Half Men
Oh, and in case you're NOT a gay man with gal best friends reading my blog, you should go read this so that you're caught up to speed.
Meanwhile, it's almost time for the Official Shon/Keith 80th Birthday Party Bash. If you're not already on the invite list, you need to make contact, so that you can be a part of the silly (old people) fun. (Hee hee... that's what younger wives do.)
December 19, 2005
Problem-Solving for Co-habitants of Different Types
Okay, so Keith and I are very very very very very different in lots of ways.
One of the "fixes" we put into practice this year was regarding our receipts and other money-related paperwork.
BASKETS (not plastics) were the (collective) answer.
Nice, pretty Pier 1 baskets (thanks Deb, for the where-to-buy) placed in several rooms for the emptying out of pockets and whatnot saved the day. As did large envelopes for the car (since so many receipts tend to gather there and end up being "turned in" for accounting purposes... oh, about a year or so too late for a tax write-off of any kind). So, big ups to Keith for having been very, very, very, very, very good about living within the system of the baskets and large envelopes.
Mission accomplished. Well done. Kudos. Rock on. Keep the good stuff comin'.
November 7, 2005
I Do Not Recommend...
Flunitrazepam use causes several adverse effects in the user, including drowsiness, dizziness, loss of motor control, lack of coordination, slurred speech, confusion, and gastrointestinal disturbances, lasting 12 or more hours. Flunitrazepam impairs cognitive and psychomotor functions affecting reaction time and driving skill. The use of this drug in combination with alcohol is a particular concern as both substances potentiate each other's toxicity.Seems the bartender thought he was thanking me (or maybe Keith) for the big tip on our night's tab by "buying my last drink" and slipping Rufies into it.
I've been drunk before (of course) and I know what that is like. I remember NOTHING that happened after the first few sips of that drink. Not. A. Thing. And apparently the night went on long, long, long after that and I scared Keith. Quite a bit.
Today, after hearing all about the night from Keith (and hearing *his* theory, that I had been slipped something by the bartender--I would never have thought of that), not ONE little glimmer of recollection happened. Nothing seemed familiar. Total, total, total blackout. And bizarre behavior. Very bizarre. And then after a day of (some) rest... vomit. Of course, there was nothing to throw up... just water... and then blood. Lots of blood. Some from a severe nosebleed, some from my insides elsewhere.
Gotta tell ya, I don't understand how this stuff is considered recreational by ANYONE. It's scary, evil shit and I am NOT thrilled with the guy who thought it would be funny to put me through this.
October 22, 2005
Ooh, that was a good one!
And because our server lives in Santa Monica, that would make Cricket Feet down. Again. What a great week iPower Web has been having! :\
You're comin' to the party tomorrow, right?
October 17, 2005
1. Email woes are over. Woo damn hoo! (PS--They're over b/c Keith talked the stupid tech guys THROUGH their system to find the problem. Sheesh!)
2. Happy birthday, Def Jam Becca MC! You rock, celebrity girl! So glad I know you! Remember, tell that hubby to turn OFF the Effin' Fox News and treat you right. ;)
October 11, 2005
Tomorrow is our Nonaversary. Yes, we celebrate the day we didn't get married, 12 October 2002. It's always so much fun, since we invented the holiday.
First Nonaversary: stay in bed all day and say, "Thank you for not marrying me."
Second Nonaversary: champagne brunch and pottery painting.
Third Nonaversary: do a series of date nights to make up for the fact we're working on the 12th.
And yes, we count the one in 2002 as our First Nonaversary, since we invented it. And yes, we still say, "Thank you for not marrying me," to each other... only now we're married, so we kind of only mean, "Thanks for not marrying me on THAT day."
Yes, I'm taking work on our honeymoon (but anyone who knows Keith knows, by virtue of the fact that HE's going, I'm taking WORK on my honeymoon anyway), but THIS will be stuff I can do while he's sleeping. *giggle*
Oh, I'm sooooooooo excited! Yippee!
October 4, 2005
Don't Judge Me!
Is it wrong?
Is it wrong that I open all of the semi-easily-opened pistachios and leave the too-tightly-encased ones for Keith?
I mean, I am wrist-down dainty.
Posted by bonnie at 11:53 PM
September 23, 2005
I seriously have nothing to say.
Still sick. Trying to work on the book's revisions between big sleeps. Watching TV. Being bored.
Keith is auditioning for a "Disney Dad"-type role (heavy on the goofball). HAPPY BIRTHDAY, LISA! More more more DayQuil... and still, I got a rock!
Posted by bonnie at 1:14 PM
September 13, 2005
Oh, All Right!
We're telling people.
Thanks to our most wonderful hush-hush friends for helping us keep this private for as long as we have. And congrats to those who figured it out despite our best efforts to keep it very low-key.
Honestly, doing this with only four days of planning was a lot less stressful than the way we were trying to do it back in 2002. And keeping it private was a nice way to honor the intimacy of it all.
So, yeah. I'm a Mrs. Who'dathunkit?!? Tee hee.
Posted by bonnie at 6:19 AM
August 25, 2005
For the latest on Scout Taylor-Compton, click the banner below.
In other news...
Something Keith is really good at is forgiveness. He's also an expert at the practice of unconditional love.
Me? I suck at both. I am very bad at forgiving (especially myself) and my love is almost always conditional. I demand perfection from myself and those around me, I am not a tolerant person, and I always feel as though I must punish myself for extended periods of time when I behave in any less-than-perfect way toward others.
I am pledging to learn from Keith (as he so frequently learns from me, with grace and gratitude) that the BEST gift for someone you've hurt is total forgiveness and that NO ONE is served by extended periods of self-loathing. He loves to say that what makes us BEAUTIFUL, as humans, is our imperfections. I say that we are sometimes beautiful DESPITE our imperfections.
I have a lot to learn. Hm. I guess that makes me one really beautiful human being then, eh?
I remain... a work in progress.
Posted by bonnie at 5:06 AM
August 16, 2005
Power Is Sexy
This is true. I find power so effin' sexy. Many women do. *melt*
There is something so gorgeous about the pompous, arrogant, articulate, brilliant posts Keith is making over at the SAG Actor board lately that I just want to throw myself at him.
Oh wait... I can do that! *giggle*
Posted by bonnie at 4:54 PM
August 7, 2005
Just gotta keep braggin' about my friends!
And, as I get this news via email, I catch two of the fine actors we interviewed in Acting Qs on tonight's Cold Case. Danny Pino (of course, since he's a series regular) and the amazing Baadja-Lyne Odums.
Finally, I would be remiss if I didn't praise the sexy and wonderful Keith Johnson, as he has his first ever callback for a national network commercial tomorrow. Rockstar! Break a leg, baby. Kick some ass.
Posted by bonnie at 8:41 PM
July 18, 2005
Finally! Here are some photos from Quinn's visit. Click on any to enlarge by quite a bit.
I really love these photos. Thanks again to the amazing Cathy McCall for doing such great work. We're really happy with the way you made us all look so good!
Enjoy these photos (and this post) for a while. From the looks of this week, it's going to be pretty tough to get to post. New feature film casting gig, next Self-Management for Actors seminar, meeting to discuss the next-next feature film casting gig, HHH joint venture press release to create and blitz media with, plus packing for the trip to Missouri to cast a weekend's worth of short indie films for the American Academy of Art's Indie Filmmaker's Bootcamp. Hoo, boy... that's some lots of stuffs!
PS--The NEXT book (the one I haven't written yet, the one that's only been announced to our distributor due to the fact that their catalogue runs way early) has already presold 571 copies. What IS that?!?
Posted by bonnie at 12:12 AM
July 11, 2005
This Is Fun
Look at what I got from E! today.
Happy birthday from the gang at E! Online. Hope it's a great one! You also share your birthday with the following celebrities: Lil' Kim, Bonnie Pointer, Bruce McGill, John Henson, Lisa Rinna, Richie Sambora, Sela Ward, Thomas Mitchell
From my own notes:
Also born today: John Quincy Adams, George Eastman, E. B. White, Yul Brynner, and Suzanne Vega.
And Keith rocked his Big Love producer session. Woo hoo!
Posted by bonnie at 3:37 PM
July 9, 2005
Where to begin...
Where do you begin when you have so so so so much going on that you can't even begin to STOP and organize thoughts into words (much less organize thoughts into words that accurately represent the non-stop goings-on)? Whew! I am spinning!! LOVE IT... but it's a LOT of swirl. I feel like I'm in the center of a kick-ass Spirograph design with lots of color. It's gorgeous, complex, and thrilling to behold. But, man, is it a lot to wrap my brain around!
We've finished up prereads for Shrinks. Wow. Some of the most amazing (and also some of the most baffling) actors I've seen, for this one. I'm thrilled with the actors we'll be bringing to callbacks (once we are able to cut down even further; we currently have too many actors on our short list). As for what was baffling... well... let's just say I actually WISH there were a Hollywood Blacklist so that I could make sure one actor is on it. *shudder* I have written (for the first time, ever): NEVER AGAIN across a headshot. I'll explain why over drinks somewhere, sometime... later.
Just got back from the Chandler Hall table read (I didn't stay for any of the read itself; just went at the start to get the last two actors to sign off on their SAG contracts and to get *my* final check for casting services). It is so very cool to see all of the actors cast in one place at the same time. Casting directors never really get to do that. We may see two or three together during chemistry checks at callbacks, but it's so neat to see a dozen confident, CAST, happy actors gathering, meeting, ready to begin the journey that will result in a feature film a year from now. Very gratifying.
Happily completing my essay (to go with my application) for joining the CSA. Received a copy of the letter Michael Donovan wrote on my behalf. It made me cry. What a wonderful man! And truly, he has been a mentor for me since the very beginning of this road (heck, even before I had any idea it was a path)! Wonderful letter. Wonderful man.
In fact, Michael was one of the first people Keith called with the good news. Yup. Keith Johnson, just three years after his first acting gig in Los Angeles, has signed with Origin Talent. That's right. THE Origin Talent. That's Origin Talent of JP Manoux, Katie Stuart, Patrick Malone, Susan Wood, Rodney Rowland, Kate Flannery, Christa Campbell, Suzanne Krull, Patrick Bristow, Jf Pryor, Will Wallace, Sean Bell, Rusty Joiner, Lindsay Hollister, Jake Hanover, Jessica Lancaster, and *ahem* Bob Clendenin fame. Awwwwww, yeah! That's a working actor agency, baby!
Fucking rockstar development. Abby Casey is the best manager on the planet and Keith Johnson now has a manager and TWO agents. Kathleen Schultz for print (signed earlier this week), and now Origin frickin' Talent. So so so so so amazing. Just unbelievable and delightful and perfect. Congratulations, my working actor baby. Oh, and break a leg at your THIRD producer callback session for Big Love. Nail it to the fucking wall!
*ahem* Sorry 'bout the f-word all over the place. I'm just really happy.
Okay, so in a week full of amazing developments, I get this email from someone who has read my advice in a new book published by the UGA Alumni Association.
Seems my advice to 2005 UGA grads is on page 35. You can download the whole PDF by clicking that phrase. If you just want to see my passage in If I Only Knew Then..., click here (also PDF, just smaller). I shared advice that was shared by my aunt Jean, back when I was in crisis over my decision to move back to Atlanta and go to grad school. I couldn't believe I was actually considering leaving Hollywood. It was my PLAN. She taught me about Plan A and Plan B... well... read the passage. You'll see. Cool to have already gotten email about it.
And, I sent a note to Aunt Jean to thank her for the advice and to show her the impact it obviously had on me. I'm guessing she doesn't even recall that particular conversation, but it certainly helped me, in those tough early-20s (when you're so sure you know how your life is going to turn out and think it's WRONG to not know (vs. how blissful it is to not know, which you eventually learn)).
I love living in Santa Monica. We're almost at our anniversary here. So blissful. Being so close to the beach, being able to walk everywhere, the cool weather, the friendly people. Ah, people laugh about, "Never wanting to go east of the 405," but Keith tells them I try not to go east of 26th Street! The temperature drops there, when you're coming back from "the rest of LA" to the Westside. It's not just that, though. It's also the vibe. My pulse actually slows at that point. I relax differently. It's awesome.
And while I love my digs... man, doesn't this place look cool?
It's almost that time! I'm really excited about this birthday. It's been an outstanding year.
That's Ash in last weekend's LA Times. (Click it to see the whole article/scan--very large.) Go, girl. You are definitely the breakout star of MTV's The '70s House. Win! Win big!
Okay. If you haven't already, shame on you. And go NOW. Read the brilliance that is (collectively) Colleen Wainwright's "Searches, We Get Searches" blogs. Of course, every bit of her blog is brilliant, but it's the SEARCH stuff that makes me *snork* (snort-laugh). So much, in fact, I asked her to teach me how to track searches to my blog so that I could try to be so funny.
So far... here's what I've got. In seven weeks of tracking, the most interesting searches that have come my way have been (and my lame attempt at comedy follows each):
Eva Longoria Golden Globes (Yes, yes she does. Mmmmmm.)
Greer Shephard dress (She does, too. Probably once or twice every day!)
Miata touch-up paint Miata (That's catchy! I could sing that.)
photo of Kevan Jenson (Hm. I don't have one, but I'll see if I can snap a pic on the SixHundy on Wednesday, if you'd like.)
star caps (Tooth-coverings for famous people? Headgear for celestial bodies? Five-point bullets? Nah... just a bright-orange, garlic-smelling herbal drug thingy.)
How'd I do, Coco? You say the searches will get better with time, right? ;) Hopefully the comedy will too.
Just transition artwork, above. It says my name. Cool, huh?
Okay, so we took a vote in the Gillespie-Johnson household. Best Hunter: Thwok. Sexiest Vixen: Salema. Sweetest Oaf: Archie (although Keith was close on that one... he's not as sweet).
Oh, and Lily, here's my blog!
'Til next time!
(reminders to self: blog about why a special agent from the ATF stopped by on Thursday, the cat that meditates to the Stones, Fantastic 4, and cool sofa repair guys. also look up the date's for Joni's vist, find out if the casting gig in MO and the trip to Tahoe are mutually exclusive, roll out a SMFA seminar press release, and consult the SixHundy for the rest of the scary to do list. that is all. back to work. stop with the blogging and trust that you'll remember all the other shyte you want to write about when the time is there to do so. seriously. go now. now.)
Posted by bonnie at 11:41 AM
July 1, 2005
Reasons I'm Sad/Reasons I'm Happy
1. (Sad) . Honestly, Luther (and one of the Tonies from Tony Toni Toné) was one of the best-smelling guys I ever worked for, back in my Left Bank Management days. As much as I loved taking weed over to JT's house, catching Richard's stalker, making the world believe the '93 album was the second LP from Meat, making the last contract offer ever made to Nirvana, chilling with the brothers G, or helping Joey with his folks, I have to say that it was Luther Vandross who was loving, sweet, genunie, and just a big ball of love-to-hug. What a loss! Too soon. We'll miss you.
2. (Sad) . Are you kidding me? You couldn't wait an effin' three years to help us out? Ugh. I remember when you were brought onboard, Ms. Sandra Day O'Connor. I'm feeling as old as you must feel. I just feel mad at you for handing the keys of freedom over to that rat bastard W. Grr.
5. (Happy) . Did my application for the CSA and asked for reference letters from my favorite casting mentors. Very happy. *fingers crossed* for approval, seeing as the vote for new members takes place on my birthday (that can't possibly be a bad sign).
6. No pic. Just love. I'm a happy happy happy gal. Cast is near-locked for Chandler Hall (even received flowers from the actor we cast in the lead; a lovely note saying, "I didn't know what your favorite flowers were, so I sent you mine. Thanks for everything! Your Jimmy Bravo," (SUCH A CLASS ACT)), auditions are scheduled for Shrinks, and... best for last... Keith has signed with his first AGENT. Yup. My cute boy now has a PRINT AGENT in Los Angeles. It would seem "NFL-lovin' grill dad" is big biz in the sale circulars! Cool deal!
Big weekend. Big love. Woo damn hoo!
Posted by bonnie at 11:22 PM
June 24, 2005
Fun Day Fun Night
Got the SAG contract faxed over to our first cast member (woo), breakdown went out on the next project (woo hoo), pulled an all-nighter to edit all preread selects onto a CD for the director in prep for callbacks next week (woo damn hoo).
There are some seriously amazing actors who read for this film. Wow. Such a great experience, casting.
And tonight, we head out to see Lily Mercer, who comes to town to visit from NY every year or so. She was the director of the Christmas play I did at the Attic Theatre in 1999 (tiny grainy photo above of me with a castmate) and is an outstanding actor. I'm so so so much a fan! Always a blast to get to hang out with her and my fellow former Attic Theatre Company Members. So much catching up to do!
In other news, Keith had yet another agent meeting (set up by his rockstar manager) and just received his contract for a SAG film shoot. Good Friday.
Posted by bonnie at 5:30 PM
June 23, 2005
This just in:
The results of the NLRB-sponsored election are in.
More than 96% of the Casting Directors and Associates who took part in the election voted to be represented by the Teamsters. 96%--an overwhelming majority. In addition the NLRB representative said that, in his 25 years, this was the smoothest mail ballot that he had ever overseen--a testament to our willingness to work together with the AMPTP representatives to make this happen efficiently.
The next step is to sit down and negotiate a contract. Steve and the Teamsters will be in touch with the AMPTP to set a date to begin formal talks. We will let you know as things progress.
Thank you to EVERYONE for their hard work in getting us to this point. Thank you all for believing it could be possible and following through on the work to make this happen. Your trust in the essential notion that together we are capable of great things has led us here.
Your NY/LA Steering Committees
Nice to come home to such big news after an amazing day of prereads for Chandler Hall. Man, what a great cast this is going to be!
Breakdown for Shrinks is going out next, then a nap. I'm exhausted--and with good reason.
Keith is too. Producer callback for Crossing Jordan (AGAIN! Third time!) and second agent meeting for commercial rep. Whew! What a day!
Posted by bonnie at 5:26 PM
June 22, 2005
Real World Austin
Holy crap, that's a good show.
So, I got home from the SAG LifeRaft talk (which was effin' rockstar) and from taking Keith and Quinn to the airport (Quinn was VERY excited about taking the red-eye home) and found that Kris' boyfriend TiVo had saved Real World: Austin for me. Holy crap, what a good show! I don't remember such an exciting first episode ever.
In other I-love-TV news, I've noticed a whole buncha cool stuff coming up for my summer TV viewing. More on that later.
I've got to tweak the schedule for Thursday's prereads, plus finish the breakdown for Shrinks. Man, I should be sleeping! Oh well...
PS--There is a much more agile version of Archie who lives outside these days. What a panic attack seeing him run through the courtyard tonight gave me! Thought the oaf had escaped Casa Gillespie-Johnson. Nope. Still sleeping, right where we left him. Ha!
Posted by bonnie at 2:25 AM
June 19, 2005
Best Father's Day Ever
What a wonderful day!
Thanks, Cathy, for sending this photo to us. You do such wonderful work!
Posted by bonnie at 2:24 PM
June 8, 2005
Have you ever been so totally and completely obsessed with something that you cannot fathom NOT thinking about it, even for a second?
Yeah. I've been obsessed with 1990 Mazda Miata touch-up paint.
See, when you have a nearly 16-year-old car, you need to touch up the paint in places from time to time. And when you pack to MOVE, you put things like the touch-up paint you bought ON THE SAME DAY YOU BOUGHT THE CAR in one of several boxes that (after the move) may not get completely unpacked--or even ones that may get put deep into a closet for storage, since you haven't needed anything in the boxes for months--and God help you if you think you can begin to find said touch-up paint when you realize there's a little fleck-off going on after the TicTac had a visit to the carwash.
Worse, give up EVER thinking you could find the damn thing, if you just looked ONE MORE TIME inside EVERY FREAKIN' box, drawer, closet, storage unit of EVERY kind... but please do go ahead and LOOK one more time (scratch that... not ONE more time... try a dozen more times). But don't you DARE stop THINKING that you *could* possibly find it, if you just looked ONE more time.
I told you I was NOT WELL.
Yes. I finally broke down and spent the FIVE BUCKS plus shipping to order the dang thing from a Miata shop online. Do you think *maybe* I could stop obsessing about where the damn thing is now?
Place yer bets, folks!
PPS--Just got home from a great industry thingy hosted by the TMA, Breakdowns, Barefoot Wine, and the Hollywood Reporter for the CBS fall season roll-out (preview, keynote, and panel). Way cool. Awesome giftbags! Swag is goooood.
Posted by bonnie at 12:05 AM
June 7, 2005
Quinn will be here so soon! Sooo soon! Yippee!
Keith went from a producer callback for a new fall TV show this morning straight to the airport. He'll be in McChicken (Michigan... hee hee) tonight, and head back in the morning with the Q man. Woo hoo!!
We're hoping to do increasingly-longer visits each year (like we've done thus far), meaning maybe next year will be a month... building up to all summer one of these years.
I'm very very very excited to have Quinn here. Hurry home, honey. Bring that kiddo of yours to Cali!
Posted by bonnie at 1:05 PM
June 3, 2005
Theory of Car Drama and Showbiz
Okay, so I've always had this theory (and it seems to pan out, according to most actors I've talked to) that if you get a parking ticket while you're at an audition, you will book the gig.
Well, yesterday, Keith's car was towed. And he had a rockstar meeting (over 90 minutes) with an amazing agent, after his rockstar manager hooked him up with a week filled with agency meetings. Have we mentioned how much we love Keith's manager?
So, if a parking ticket during an audition means a booking, I think it's safe to say that a tow-away the morning of an agent meeting means you're going to get signed. We shall see.
In other news, A New Tomorrow is almost fully-cast. I'm doing some offer letters to name actors on Monday for this film *and* for Chandler Hall, based on some wonderful pitches we've gotten since the breakdown went out Wednesday night. Excellent progress.
Quinn and the book arrive next week. I'm teaching four classes next week plus attending an amazing CBS/TMA event. It's just an amazing, kick-ass life. Period.
Posted by bonnie at 11:10 AM