shaun is here, raza is back. rob and ryan will be back too, i know, otherwise some ass-kickage will be in order.
by alison headley on 8/31/2001 08:15:56 PM | bang on |

Well now, that would be indicative of the dichotomy of which I spoke. That "manic buffoon provided for your amusement" bounded onto the near-empty dance floor not to please all the party-goers, but to amuse you, Ryan, and Virgil. Chances are, the more presentational I am, the more uncomfortable I am. Isn't it true that we all have our social acts? The face we leave in a jar by the door, as it were? I spent the entirety of high school blurring the line between myself and my front, so that, for all intents and purposes, no one really knew me. The attraction to acting, for me as for many, derives from a distinct desire to be someone else for any length of time, coupled with a focused middle-child-syndrome that compels me to be the center of attention.

And the paradox in that is, to be most complete as an actor, one must not attempt to be someone else, so much as allow someone to be you. The best performers are those whose true feelings and spirit bleed through the muslin of an author's words.

But I'm all better now. Really. Not at all stunted.

by andrew wollman on 8/28/2001 03:05:56 PM | bang on |

*cough*

hey, um, andrew? remember when we were at virgil's wedding reception with ryan, and the DJ played gloria gaynor's "i will survive," and the dance floor was empty except for that guy who ripped off his jacket, ran out onto the floor, slid onto his ass, and then stood up and danced, waving his jacket around under the hot lights like a male stripper? wasn't that you?

yes, i thought so. anti-social at large functions, my ass. maybe that was just the actor in you, though.

these face-to-face meetings need to happen, and pronto! may i suggest we all try to attend sxsw this year? i'll go rob a bank, and then i'll fly you all out to austin, where we will stay in the gangbang penthouse at the omni, and cause geeky ruckus like none have ever seen before. sound good?

also, ryan did try to get me to read the ishmaels, but i don't know that i'll have time, what with all the shakespeare i'm going to be reading this semester. i'll try to fit them in, however, as they sound interesting.

by alison headley on 8/27/2001 07:55:58 PM | bang on |

Actually, I am starting to feel horribly left out of all these face-to-face meetings, so I propose an international Gangbang summit to be held in Geneva on the eleventh day of the eleventh month of this year at, let's say, 11:00. That sound good to everyone? Good.

As for the introvert vs. extrovert conundrum, I somehow fall on both ends of the spectrum. I'm unexplainably anti-social at large functions, and tend to hover with the folks I know at parties and other big events. I don't especially like meeting new people, and I abhor small talk. Now, once you know me (or more importantly, once I know you), I am an alternately manic buffoon provided for you amusement and an adept conversationalist. So, for me, the level of my gregariousness is directly realted to my comfort level.

But then, I think that is almost universally understood.

Since this is free-form now: How many of you have been persuaded by Ryan to read Daniel Quinn's books? There's a hell of a good ongoing topic we could tackle...
by andrew wollman on 8/26/2001 12:44:51 PM | bang on |

so when you decide whether you're an extreme introvert, do you measure it by your actions or by how much fighting you have to do with yourself before you act? :)

being sick has definitely affected my outlook on life, but I don't really know how to quantify it beyond that. I always need a little time for perspective to sink in, though -- after I survived the five-month battle with acute kidney failure (the most dangerous thing that's happened to me as a direct result of my autoimmune disorder so far), my doctors were thrilled by how fast I recovered but I felt that my body was almost completely beyond my control. I wasn't happy to be out of the hospital so much as I was overwhelmed with a feeling of futility -- not about life so much as about my physical existence. and I did turn that around, by starting to play soccer again and taking my physical therapy seriously for the first time ever and slowly coming to understand that my metabolism would really never be the same... but it took a while. I definitely don't have as much confidence in my body as I did six years ago, but I have a much greater appreciation for the things it can do.

that was a sort of indirect response, and it wasn't intended to be, but my third-to-last day at work is probably not the one to start skipping out on morning meetings, so off I go. :P
by rabi on 8/22/2001 08:00:50 AM | bang on |

I've often wondered how Rabi does it. How she manages to have such an exuberance and sense of wonder towards life, despite dealing with a chronic illness. Ryan and I were both wondering that, over smokes and bottles of ale on Plymouth Beach a couple of weeks ago (God, it feels so odd to type that sentence, but it's true. What a world.) To me, she seems to see a different, richer, more fascinating world than I do on a daily basis. I often pay lip service to the same thing, and I have something like it in rare, transcendent moments, but I can't seem to find a way to sustain it or call it up at will.

I'm sure you have asked all of the same questions that seem to be holding me back, and then some, but you don't let the lack of answers stop you from diving in and getting the most out of life. From an outsider's perspective, reading your last couple of weeks of posts, I think I can guess why. You've obviously paid a heavy price of sorts for your vision, one that I likely wouldn't wish for or be able to endure. If you've been disabled for a time, or can talk matter-of-factly about going flatline, you're probably much less likely to take life for granted. And much more likely to have a sense of urgency and purpose from moment to moment.

I'm not saying that that's the only reason, because I'm sure it's not, but I'd venture to guess that you've been shaped by those kinds of experiences in ways those of us who are lucky enough to have avoided them can never quite grasp. Actually, I'm not quite sure what I'm saying. Maybe it's that I shouldn't beat myself up for not being able to call that up at will, or that I should work on appreciating the small wonders of moment-to-moment existence more rather than brooding over the big problems and questions that might never get answered. I'm beginning to think that the answers have been all around all along, if I could only have meandered around a bit, stopped to look at the trees, frolic with the rabbits, and hear the birds sing, rather than concentrating on mapping the best and shortest route through the metaphorical forest.

Oh, and getting back somewhat on-topic, I wouldn't qualify Alison or Ryan as introverts really. They seem more middle of the road to me, with Rabi and I falling somewhat on the introverted side, but not near the extreme or anything. Andrew and Rob (if he's still here. If you are, speak up man!) I don't really know well enough to tell, not having met them in meatland yet. Personally, I certainly need people, but I can do without them for periods of time, and I do need respites of time alone, or I start to go batty from social overload. Social interaction is most definitely far from effortless for me, but I also think it's an effort supremely worth undertaking, fwiw.
by Jared Dunn on 8/22/2001 02:54:19 AM | bang on |

rabi, i think in that picture you look like a girl i know at artiste named brandi. ever since we met brandi over a year ago, my friend ryan and i have been calling her "new friend brandi," even though we never hang out with her, and we think she's weird. so, to me you look like new friend brandi.

non-serious is good. i also think we should fix the comment system. i'll get on that, after i finish scanning and optimizing 150 sodding london photos. you guys better appreciate my photos, okay? this is taking me forever.

i also don't really think i'm an introvert. i'd place myself more in the middle of the spectrum; i like being alone and i love living alone, but i do seek other people out a lot. i think the reason it's been easy and fun for us all to talk to each other in life is because we automatically have something huge in common, something we can talk about at length without running out of opinions or things to say. and from that initial commonality, you can jump off into talking about anything you want, and it all stems from there. yes?

by alison headley on 8/21/2001 09:33:55 PM | bang on |

Eh, nobody, except perhaps for Yahoo, and he doesn't blog here(though he probably could if he would just ask one of us).

Anyway, I just sayin we should be more conversational here, serious or no.

And yes, Ryan is tall as the day is long. And you look downright ghostly in that picture. A weird trick of the flash perhaps? I dunno, I never think I look like myself in pictures. At least, whenever I know I'm being photographed, it always turns out horribly. I've never been able to purposefully control my expressions very well for some reason. Whenever I try to smile for the camera, it comes out as this forced, horrible caricature of a grin. I've just always been bad at putting on a mask, be it for harmless reasons like school pictures, or more nefarious ones. I'm a lousy liar, and I'd make an even worse actor, no doubt. Anyway, if you're ever going to photograph me, make sure you suprise me. Those usually turn out just fine.
by Jared Dunn on 8/19/2001 02:29:52 PM | bang on |

what what? who's serious?

I think I look like someone other than myself in this picture, but I have no idea who the someone else is. any ideas?

also, ryan is really tall.
by rabi on 8/18/2001 01:27:40 PM | bang on |

For me, it's more of just a fundamental schism in how I communicate. I've written about it more in depth before, but what it boils down to is that I'm horrible at expressing myself verbally. I'm a control freak, and like being able to craft what I say carefully, so as not to be misunderstood. I don't know why I fear being misunderstood so much, it's really quite irrational, but I do nonetheless. The right words just don't seem to come quickly enough or at all in the pressure-packed (well, for me anyway) and rapid world of social interaction. But, one must try, and throw oneself into uncomfortable situations, if he is to ever really live life, no?

On a completely different (but tangentially related) tack, I propose a slightly different direction for us here. Lets quit being so damned serious. Lets just turn this into a conversation place for ourselves, and quit thinking so much about the fact that it's written for public consumption. The people will come if we're interesting (and I suspect that we all are, based on our other work elsewhere,) and if we're not, well, fuck em. So, just say whatever's on your mind, and don't be afraid to be trivial, or banal, or goofy, or whatever you feel like. Not that I think any of us really are, but we do seem to be holding back quite a bit here (hence the lack of, um, content of any kind.) Anyway, meeting up with Rabi and Ryan in Boston just reinforced for me how much I enjoy talking to you guys. I want more of that, and we already have this space that we aren't really using, so why not here? just my 2 p
by Jared Dunn on 8/16/2001 04:20:31 PM | bang on |

*poke*

so we are all introverts, yes? but we seem to have no trouble talking to each other when we meet in real life... jared is probably the fifth person to tell me that I am much more talkative than he expected, but I still consider myself almost pathologically shy in many situations. what's up with that? is it about the internet lowering our inhibitions, or just about meeting the right people?
by rabi on 8/11/2001 11:51:51 AM | bang on |