One person away from being able to move into an apartment with a bedroom.
One person away from proving to my commercial agents that I’m worth their time.
For the first audition I had been given no sides (script) and no idea as to who I was playing. I was bitter.
Bitter that I was on one more audition I didn’t feel right for.
Bitter that all the other girls looked like they were exactly right for the role.
But especially bitter because I had to sit in the waiting room through conversations like this:
Shut up! You booked that Tide spot? I knew it! You loser. OMG.
Whatever, girl. I just saw you on the new Taco Bell spot.
Yeah, that casting director has a thing for me. But whatevs…
I gritted my teeth and took note of the giant difference between commercial and theatrical actors.
Finally they called me in, I read the lines, and thought they hated me.
Apparently I was wrong. My agent called me the next week and told me I had a callback.
And this time I was prepared. I made them laugh. I knew my lines. And I brought headphones to drown out all the Tide, Taco Bell, Playtex talk.
When I found out I was on hold (which means it’s between one other actor and myself) I was ecstatic.
But then I looked at the dates.
I had a ticket to go home for the days they were shooting.
Of course. Because that’s how things work in LA.
But as my father so wisely pointed out. If I booked this I could buy ten tickets home.
And I wanted it.
I had dreams I booked it. And as people poured champagne on my head and confetti rained down from the ceiling I would shout jubilantly about how all the hard work was worth it.
When my agent called I tried not to sound too eager.
But I didn’t get it.
They went with a girl who was ten years older.
That’s the thing about commercials. You can do your absolute best but not have the right hair, or eye color, or wrinkles.
To say I was devastated would be an over statement.
But I did have wine for lunch.
But then, the very next day, I packed my suitcase and flew home.
For a whole blissful nine days.
I ate my way through most of my grandma’s kitchen, drank beer with my high school classmates (okay – I drank vodka – they drank beer) and swam in the lake with my brother.
It was invigorating being with people who thought I was just the right age, with the right wrinkles, and the exact right eye color.
And I realized that next time I am placed on hold it won’t be so devastating if I don’t get it.
Because back home, I’m the number one choice.