Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A Promise To Do Better

I do apologize...I have been being so damn lazy about this blog, and it's getting embarrassing.  I will begin to be a grownup and keep up with myself here...honest.  (Well, in the interest of full disclosure, it's highly unlikely that I'll begin to be a grownup, but at least I'll keep up with the blog.)

The biggest news is that I got a Law & Order for tomorrow, and not only THAT, but they're finally letting me out of Brighton Beach and my Russian persona (Law & Order ALWAYS casts me as Russian).  This time I'm going to be on a soup line.  This is obviously a lateral move rather than a step up, but at least I don't have to go to Brooklyn.  Unfortunately, I DO have to go to 141st Street.  Since I now live on 2nd Street, this is a bit of a bitch, but I can do it entirely by bus, which is wonderful.  Central Casting says they think it's going to be an early call, which means I will be trotting out to a bus stop at 3:15 in the morning, but the wonderful thing about the East Village is that there are people all over the place at 3 in the morning...the bars don't close until 4 am.  And Sarah (who knows her East Village) says it's fine then.  So no problem.

Well, that was deeply annoying...just had to stop and reboot.  And while I'm thinking of rebooting, my all-time favorite story about rebooting is the following.

One morning I came in to work at my old horrible law firm, and started up my computer and noticed that smoke was coming out of it.  Well, I hastily turned it off and then crawled under the desk to unplug it.  I called our IT department, and guess what the first thing they told me to do was?  Uh huh.  Reboot.  Now I ask you.  Would anybody in their right mind try to start something up that had SMOKE coming out of it?  I personally think that all IT departments are staffed by robots, and whenever they hear a phone, they're programmed to say, "Reboot" no matter what you tell them.  "Gerbils are crawling out of my keyboard!"  "There's a sea serpent wrapped around my screen!"  "The computer just blew up and the office is on fire!"  Try it!  Endless amounts of fun for all!

Meanwhile, back on the professional front, nice Yancey at Central Casting not only gave me my Law & Order for tomorrow, but he checked my availability for a multiple day shoot on a new untitled project for March, AND said he'd start sending me out on AFTRA jobs and get me waivers!  The waivers thing is excellent because you can then bypass the entire application process for AFTRA, of which I am currently NOT a member, and I'm missing jobs because of it.  I was holding off because there's supposedly a merger between SAG and AFTRA coming up, which is closer to fruition than I've ever seen it before, but it'll still take at least a year before it goes into effect...and that's a year during which I could be earning more money.  And this AFTRA/SAG merger thing is something we've all been hearing about for somewhat longer than my case since the 1960s.  Hasn't happened yet.  So very good all around.

And I actually had my first dinner party in the new apartment!  I never had them in Chelsea because I hated the place to begin with and also because the kitchen (and the kitchen table) was in another room, and because of the kitchen storage problems, there was really no room to eat at the table...I would have had to put up the card tables.  Ugh.  Not to mention the fact that I find it hard to have coherent table conversation when people are leaping up and down to go downstairs for a cigarette.  But now, with my lovely open kitchen and all the counter space, we can actually sit around my battered old table and put out the ashtrays!  Yahoo!

I made a very old-fashioned dish that I've been making for about a million years.  It's a sort of bastard lasagna known as Martha's Casserole, and while it's the most church-supperish thing I can think of, people absolutely go nuts for it.  It was a constant feature of Encore Theatre cast parties way back in the 60s, because it can be infinitely multiplied or cut in half, and is pretty cheap.  You take 8 oz. of broad egg noodles and cook them.  Then you saute a pound of chop meat (leaner is better) drain it, put it back in the pan and add two 8 oz, cans of plain tomato sauce.  Then mix 8 oz. of cottage cheese, 8 oz. of soft cream cheese, a quarter cup of sour cream, and one bunch of chopped green onions.  Now, put a layer of the noodles (half of them) in a one quart casserole dish (deepish, for this amount), out the cheese over that and spread it around, put the rest of the noodles on top, then cover that with the meat sauce and a couple of tablespoons of melted butter over the top.  Stick it in a 375 over for half an hour.  This serves 4, but as I said, you can multiply and divide it at will.  And it reheats well in the microwave.  I think I've probably given this recipe before, but it's such a useful thing that it bears repeating.  I served salad and hot biscuits with it.  It's perfect for a cold winter night, and people love it.

And I'm rethinking the apartment yet again...I keep sitting here on my bottom doing nothing, but at least the mind is working.  I let the movers just put shit down wherever they wanted to, more or less, because I was so glad to get here, and then I just left it where it was because of getting Christmas together, in terms of putting books in bookshelves, essentially.  However, we're in the middle of February now, and while I fully expect we're going to have a massive snowstorm or a week of subzero temperatures yet to come (I never trust the weather...that's being a Chicagoan), the fact remains that we ARE going to get to March, and shortly thereafter (yeah, yeah, but time tends to telescope as you get older), I will want to use my airconditioner, which currently has a large leather chair directly in front of it.  This is obviously counter productive, and also anybody wanting to watch TV from that chair has to look sort of sideways.  So I want to move stuff into the bedroom, where there are already bookshelves on either side of my bed.  They are, however, stackable, and they're not currently I can get two more in there, if you see what I mean (i.e., the ones I'm moving are stackable too).  That means I can move the bed/couch over and stick the chair angled into the corner, and voila!  Better TV sightlines!  And a clear path for air conditioning.  I'm going to have to take all the books out of all those bookshelves, to which I'm NOT looking forward, but on the other hand, I can really stand to get rid of more it's a good opportunity.

Now I'm going to put away the laundry and decide on three outfits for's a wear one, bring two day.  That means I need one outfit for being in a soup line and two more outfits for being a pedestrian.  This is a flying nuisance, because Law & Order has a terrible tendency to tell you what to bring and then decide you don't need it after all...and there you are hauling your entire wardrobe all over creation.  Bleahhh.  But I'm working!

Love, Wendy

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