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Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015

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News From The Homefront [Nov. 17th, 2010|03:19 pm]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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I've been busy.

This past weekend I shocked the well at the land. This is done to kill algae in the well and pipes. The procedure involves pouring diluted chlorine into the well, mixing it into the well water by spraying the hose into the well (thus recirculating the well water until the chlorine is evenly mixed in), running each faucet that gets water from the well until chlorinated water is coming out and then shutting down the whole system for 24 to 48 hours so the chlorine can ill the algae. I did part of this Saturday, but it got to where I couldn't smell chlorine, so I went home. Sunday I went back and made sure the system was thoroughly chlorinated. Yesterday I went back and discovered that the well water no longer smelled of chlorine. This probably means that I'll have to shock the well again soon. :-( In addition, the water came out really slowly, so it took forever to flush out the chlorine. I thought this was due to the pressure bottle for the well being empty, but it turns out that the whole-house filter was clogged. I know so much more now that I've shocked the well. The main piece of shocking-a-well information that the Internet left out was to bring some towels. I used one to cover the opening to the well when I was recirculating the water with the hose. Without the towel, a fine mist of heavily chlorinated water was floating around and I didn't want to breath it. I used a second towel to wipe my hands because they got wet a lot.

In a different incarnation I've started taking acting classes. The first day was OK. It started out with some fairly standard relaxation and breathing exercises. Then there was a fun get-to-know-you thing where each person said their name along with a gesture they made up. Then everyone repeated the gesture and said the name. It was fun to see what gestures people came up with. After that we did paired up and mirrored each other's moves and then we told each other a brief story from our lives. Finally we got on to acting. We paired off again and each pair got a piece of "ambiguous dialog" to act out. We made up our own scenarios and the results were interesting and fun. Our homework was to memorize our ambiguous dialog lines.

I spent the week trying to learn my lines and slowly felt more and more defeated. No memory means no memory. Somehow I had hoped that would change but it didn't. So I went to class yesterday ready to look foolish. But there was only time for two skits and mine wasn't one of them, so I have a whole 'nother week to be frustrated. But what I learned last night was worth it. The instructor had the people perform a skit. Then she created background for the skit and had them redo it. For example, a skit was about a motorcycle mechanic asking the owners son to help her by holding a part while she screwed it in. The first performance was OK, but then our instructor suggested 1) the customer was coming for the motorcycle very shortly and it had to be ready, 2) the woman mechanic was having an affair with the owner of the shop and the son resented this 3) So the son hated the mechanic and was trying to screw her up by being as unhelpful as possible while appearing to help. Zzzzap! The skit turned from merely OK to really funny and interesting. The next skit was about two people who got married because the girl got pregnant. They didn't know each other very well and had no money for doctors so they decided she would just have the baby at home with the dad acting as midwife. The skit opens just as they realize that she's going into labor. The instructor helped them to decide that the dad wanted the mom to be more dependent and obedient and the girl wanted him to be more "there" for her. So he became impatient and paternalist and she became more pleading and clingy. This helped the skit develop some dimension and made it much more interesting. I left the class with a much greater understanding of how an actor's motivation can improve a scene. It was really cool. On the down side, all of the folks in the skits had memorized their lines perfectly, as had my partner for my skit. I could tell that my partner was really appalled that I didn't know any of my lines. I think my lack of memory is going to make this class pretty awkward. I just hope it's not too awful.

Oh, and I also planted about forty more acorns while I was out at the land.

[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2010-11-18 12:04 am (UTC)
When you hear a conversation, do you remember it? I'm thinking I remember you reporting on a conversation (in the "He said, then she said..." sort of way. If you can remember conversations, maybe it would help to think of your dialogue as a conversation you actually heard. Or maybe you're cut out for improv only.

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[User Picture]From: cdozo
2010-11-18 01:41 am (UTC)
When I repeat conversations, I am only paraphrasing. I doubt I'll ever be able to memorize lines, but I'm going to give it my best shot. The hard part about this dialog is that it doesn't say much and it's short. So there's not a lot of room for improvisation.

I do know my first line is, "Come on in here."
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[User Picture]From: ndozo
2010-11-19 05:46 am (UTC)
There you go. What's the second? You do have a memory, just no motivation. Here's what you do. Get a taser. Give it to G. Then go through the script. Every time you make a mistake, G zaps you. (You can't yell at him. He's only trying to help.) You'll have those lines memorized in no time flat.
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[User Picture]From: ndozo
2010-11-19 05:47 am (UTC)
If you post a serious answer to my comment I am going to bite you when you come east.
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[User Picture]From: curculio
2010-11-25 03:51 pm (UTC)


This is a great suggestion since C has (or had) stock in the Taser company. I would have recommended a stick but there is no stock in that.
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[User Picture]From: curculio
2010-11-25 03:49 pm (UTC)


I think EMoon and Ndozo are right. You are cut out for improv but not only for improv. When I was in the mediation course, I took stock of each and every skill that I thought I didn't have. This checklist took on a life of its own. After awhile, things started to click and I began using other skills to compensate for my deficiencies. You only have one deficiency, poor memory. So use your incredible arsenal of talents to work around the database issue.

Edited at 2010-11-25 03:52 pm (UTC)
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