Tuesday, 15 March 2011
The fine art of spanking...
What's brought this on I hear you ask? It's a bit of a lurid topic for a Tuesday late afternoon... Well let me ask you this: is there an appropriate time for this kind of conversation? Dinner with the in-laws on a Saturday night perhaps? Over lunch with the stranger next to you on a packed long haul flight? Or maybe over organic white tea with Lady Gaga on a break from her tour? (The last one probably but that's unlikely to happen, no matter how many FB contests I enter on her fan page. Mama Monster, if you're reading this I just want you to know that I think you're the best, even better than Madonna in her heyday, and that you're making me feel like I'm 15 again but in a good way.)
Anyway, I'll tell you what brought this on: I received an email from a good friend entitled "Double Take". It read: "I saw this and did a double-take until I realised it wasn't you." Attached was a still from a scene in a film. There was this woman in a business suit with short brown cropped hair who I have to admit looked a lot like me, and she was - now how shall I put it - administering corporal punishment to another woman dressed in frilly undies. For the record, it wasn't me. If it was, I would have blogged about it. Still, it left me a bit unsettled at the thought that I have a doppelganger out there who's job it is to met out corporal p
unishment to models in their undies on film. The good news is that if that's her kind of gig, we're unlikely to run into each other at auditions. (Under what circumstances did this friend of mine come across the footage of d
ubious entertainment value? I'm just going to blame it on the vagaries of Google's search function and leave it at that.)
Speaking of which, I have two coming up tomorrow. Auditions that is. In one, I'm supposed to play an outdoorsy type of young (yes!!) parent who is good with children. (No problems there, me, felines and kids in the pre-verbal phase, we're "like that". Outdoorsy, by the way, is code for not too much make up and no high heels.) Then later on (and annoyingly, almost in the same part of London but some 3 hours later) I get to audition to be part of a "normal couple but not quirky, and not too 'Londony' which is code for "not Hoxton" which happens to be my neighbourhood's uber trendy scene credited as a major influence for the likes of Gaga. Basically, unless you're in the know, you'd think they were just incredibly badly dressed skinny people with a hair problem. But I digress. I've got two auditions (whoo hoo!) calling for some wholesome motherly talent and no one asking about spanking skills, so I should be fine.
But there is a proverbial fly in the ointment: my hair. These days I like it very short. It is rather ironic given that as a child I fiercely resented my mother making me wear it that short. I grew it down to my kidneys as soon as I left for college and then suddenly went in for the pixie crop about 7 years ago. You can imagine my mother's reaction when she saw me. She didn't have to say anything. But she knew and I knew that she'd won on the hair front. I didn't care. I knew and she knew that although she may have won that battle, hey, I'd become an actress and in doing so I'd won the war. And that's what counts.
Where was I? Short hair.(I'm glad somebody's listening.) The thing with short hair is that it calls for a trim every 5 or 6 weeks to keep it under control. If you don't follow this rule, things can go horribly wrong. It usually happens overnight: after a great hair day you wake up the next morning and it is as if "ze souffle eet 'ad collap-sed" (now channelling Hercule Poirot. Hello Hercule...). There is only one cure: a hair appointment. But this time I just don't dare get it cut. Some people have barber phobia. I don't. My hairdresser is a wizard called Luigi who cuts hair for some very famous women (so famous that sometimes he can't even mention their names). He does a super job - everytime. All I have to do is walk in, sit in the chair, say "Do whatever you want!" He says "Leave it with me" and off we go.
My problem you see, is that when I have a lot of auditions, I can't afford to lose the continuity of my look by having my hair cut. If the casting director calls up my agent and says "She's got the part" I've got to look the same way I did on the audition tape. I only made that mistake once - inadvertently - after I auditioned for Any Human Heart. I got the part and then the shoot was brought forward by a month and here I was with a very "fashion forward" hairstyle to play an provincial girl in the 1980's. Luckily it was a TV production, they had time and money and know-how. (They used temporary hair extensions. If you look at the first scene on my showreel, you'd never know it wasn't all my hair.) For commercials though, the process is a lot more expedient. If you show up looking different, you're in big trouble. (And that casting director will never ever cast you again. Because casting directors, like elephants, never forget, anything, especially the bad stuff.)
So here I am, the hair's growing out of my head like one of those grass hair trolls. I've been waiting to get my hair cut for over a week now, but the auditions keep coming (and I'm sure I'll land one of them soon too, I mean, statistically speaking, it's bound to happen - right?) and so I'm having to get creative with the VO5 styling putty, and the hair spray. I think it's starting to look a bit "poofy" on top but I'm just going to have to live with it a bit longer. At least for another week until I hear back about these two auditions.
Let me elaborate on that last point. When I say "hear back", I mean that if I haven't heard back in a week's time, I'll know that they're not interested. Sometimes you get "pencilled" which means "drop everything, cancel the first holiday you've booked in 12 months, we probably won't need you but we want you to know that you came a close second." And sometimes you get the part. But if you don't get it, you just never hear back.
And that, as they say, is that.