It’s late on Monday morning and I procrastinated thinking about today’s topic. So now I am stuck. AKA writer’s block. AKA I feel sorry for myself because I have nothing to write about.
The truth is that I have a lot of random things I could write about, but none of it is terribly cohesive. It’s a bunch of random experiences that left me feeling various shades of… everything.
There is a good chance that none of this week’s recap is relatable. It’s just stuff. My stuff. So if you want to go refresh your Instagram account right now, and skip reading this week’s post, I forgive you. Or you can operate at your own risk and keep reading.
I could write about my Yom Kippur. The holiest day in the Jewish calendar. The Day of Atonement. It is supposed to be a day of fasting and self-reflection. But that kind of sounds like a typical Monday for me. Most of my life, Yom Kippur was a communal experience. Always with family when I was little, and then family and friends when I was older. But the older I get, I find myself less religious and more spiritual. Living in Hawaii, I don’t know anyone who truly observes this holiday. So, I found myself making a traditional dinner, lighting the candles, saying the blessing over the wine, and finding the best versions of my favorite prayers on YouTube. Not exactly like going to your local temple with members of your community, but somehow it still generated a flood of memories and it made me feel more connected to my ancestors.
I could write about my daughter’s new friend from high school who spent the weekend with us. She is a delightful girl and they have so much in common: classes together, mutual friends and both on the volleyball team. I thought they would swim in the pool, enjoy going to the beach, invite other friends to come over and hang out too. But mostly, they just sat around and stared at their phones all weekend. I kept asking if they were interested in going somewhere or doing something, but they were perfectly content in this bizarre “parallel play.” I truly believe this is an epidemic amongst kids with devices.
I could write about the movie we saw Friday night: A Simple Favor. I really liked it! While the plot gets a little far-fetched, it was a pretty good thriller. Anna Kendrick and Blake Lively are both so watchable that it made it a fun ride. Paul Feig is a great director.
I could write about the movie we saw on Saturday night. The new Michael Moore documentary: Fahrenheit 11/9. I left the theatre in a total fit of rage. I used to be a big Michael Moore fan. I think I have seen all but one of his documentaries. But for some reason, this one really pissed me off. I felt like I wasted two hours and $30 on information I already knew. He managed to reinforce my detest for Trump (low hanging fruit). Reminded me how messed up our government is… and how much I dislike politics. He hit all my hot buttons about school shootings, immigrant children being torn from their parents’ arms and locked in detention centers. He reminded us that Flint, Michigan clean water crisis, and that we still have terrible racism in 2018. Apparently, our elections are rigged and our electoral college is antiquated. No kidding?! He pointed fingers at the Democrats, who he believes helped the Republicans get Trump elected in a perverse sort of way. At the end of the movie, I realized that the preacher (Michael Moore) only preaches to the choir (people like me), but offers no conclusion or recommendation of how we can change anything. So I left angry, upset, frustrated, and helpless.
Last night, we watched the second to last episode of Ozark Season 2. I am profoundly sad that we are almost out of episodes to watch. The acting is so good. The villains are so multi-layered and intelligent... and I just can’t get enough.
I guess I could write about tennis. I played really well on Saturday and really poorly on Sunday. But I know that would fall into the category of “who cares?"
It has been unbearably warm and sticky for the last few weeks. But does anyone really care about that either. I know what you are thinking: “But you live in Hawaiiiiii.” Fair enough.
I could do a post-mortem on the Emmys. I loved that The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel won so many awards in the comedy category… and was happy about The Americans taking home a few in the drama category. I was disappointed for Handmaid’s Tale, but otherwise pleased overall. The SNL hosts, Colin Jost and Michael Che, were a little lackluster. Normally, I love their deadpan humor, but it fell flat for this event. There were a number of great highlights though. My favorite was probably Michael Douglas’ advice to the losers: “Carry that rage. Let it fuel everything you do from this night forward. Know that you were cheated. You were robbed. That's a fact. Let that fire burn in your belly until your cold, dead body is in a pine box six feet deep clutching all its Emmys to its chest.” Okay, maybe he went a little too far in the last line, but it got a lot of laughs and it broke the tension for those who were truly gut-punched that they didn’t win.
I could tell you about how my TV movie got pushed because we missed the window of good weather in Toronto before we found an actress. Or I could tell you about how I am still waiting for an editor to deliver a rough cut on my reality show sales reel. But I am bored talking about all of that, thinking about it, and especially writing about it. This is the rollercoaster-life of a producer. Oh, and for those of you who are new to my blog. I am not a big fan of uncertainty, limbo or gray areas. So this is my own kind of personal hell for me. My sister recently suggested that I might want to give up producing and become a closet organizer. I am considering that very seriously.
This past week I was reading Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In. I am late to the party, since it was published five years ago. She is certainly a wonderful storyteller with an aspirational story to tell. She is highly educated… and we all know that she is wildly successful as Facebook’s COO. That said, the book is giving me nightmares. No I don’t mean that metaphorically. I mean literally. She tells you all the do’s and don’ts of surviving as a female corporate executive. It’s all incredibly accurate, well-researched, and honestly told. But that doesn’t stop my chest from tightening as I read the book.
But instead of feeling proud that I navigated through that world for thirty years, it leaves me feeling both overwhelmed by having survived it, and oddly ill at ease about having left it. So I have been having stress-related work nightmares.
Today when I read the latest Hollywood headlines, I couldn’t help but notice that all three broadcast networks have changed their Chairman this week. The Chairman of CBS stepped down due to sexual misconduct allegations. ABC replaced their Chairman with two FOX executives now that their corporate merger went through. NBC’s Chairman stepped down to pursue other creative endeavors.
So, my husband asked me if I wished I was still in that game. I thought long and hard about his question. Do I miss it?
I miss the steady pay check. I miss the daily opportunity to meet interesting people and hear their stories. But I don’t miss the politics. I don’t miss the 12-hour work day. I don’t miss the 7-day work week. I don’t miss not being around for my kids. I don’t miss commuting. I don’t miss corporate off-sites. I don’t miss traffic. I don’t miss high heels. I don’t miss the anxiety of carpools and child care. I don’t miss trying to schedule a doctor’s appointment as a Herculean effort. I certainly don’t miss chronic anxiety.
Although this morning when I woke up and realized I have nothing to write about, and my work projects are delayed, I could feel that anxiety come creeping back.
So, apparently, you can take the girl out of Hollywood.
But you can’t take the anxiety out of the girl.