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w/e 2019-12-01


§   For the past ten days or so I’ve been feeling oddly stressed and jittery, apparently for no good reason, given that my life does not contain many stressful things (life goals achieved, I guess). But work, and all these websites, and chores, and self-imposed stupid tasks, and life admin, and moving in a month’s time, and acting classes… all somehow, I guess are preventing me from feeling at all relaxed.

I’d forgotten that working on a single scene in a weekly class can give the entire week an odd cast. In the days leading up to the class I’ll have some anxiousness about preparing – learning lines, analysing the text and the character, thinking about motivations and opinions, worrying if I’ve done enough. And then, if it’s an emotional scene, the feelings from it can linger for days afterwards, just as waking up suddenly from an emotional dream can leave one slightly shaken. All this for a five-minute scene.

Only tangentially related, but this week I also went to help read a play a friend is writing and it was really good and funny and that was nice.

§   In the December issue of Sight and Sound there’s an interview with Sandy Powell, costume designer on The Irishman, and my eyes opened enough at these quotes that I noted them down:

  • “Robert De Niro had 102 costume changes.”
  • “In his contract, it stipulates he keeps all of his costumes and they are all archived.”
  • “We had 160 characters with speaking parts in the film and almost 7,000 extras.”

§   I’m enjoying Ladhood on iPlayer. (Why maintain a “BBC Three” brand, nearly four years after it disappeared from broadcast telly?) A man looking back at his teenage years in the early 2000s… with hilarious consequences! The tone of the framing narrative sometimes don’t quite work for me but at other times it does provide great moments when he solemnly looks back, recounting his self-aggrandising memory of an event, only to have the it undercut by what his stupid teenage self actually did or said.

§   Yesterday I went to the pub to meet a bunch of strangers who had all bought the same jacket as me. As expected it was a bit odd but, given it was nearby, I was curious. Everyone, including the couple who run Paynter Jacket Co, was very nice, also as expected, and gently, relaxedly cool. Tiny companies focusing on doing one thing well and actually doing it well and being human about it all can’t be bad. Still a bit odd to meet people like that though.

§   That’s all I guess. Mary’s back and had a great time so I’m getting used to having someone else around again, which is no hardship.

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