NOSTALGIA

I’ve lived in my home here since 1994, shortly after the quake. I have abundant room and I am unashamedly sentimental. I’ve begun a process that faces us all, making things easier for those we leave behind.

Today I threw out 150 pounds of scripts, a small forest. I kept a few; meaningful films, memorable plays and those from S:AAB and Trek, which I plan to auction off for my favorite charity, TheSoldiersProject.org. I’m tired, having just relived about 40 years of life.

Discoveries included a handwritten letter from my grandmother, a love note from Stella, a paper trail of searches for military decorations promised and forgotten, my script from PLATOON – didn’t know about that one, did you?  and a treasure trove of love letters I’d assumed had been destroyed and tossed by a jealous fiance, decades ago.

Many of those women are now stardust, once more. But I do know, even apart from such mementos that I have been valued and desired in my life. If I am now alone, it is of my choosing, for I have been fortunate beyond description…who was loved and one that loved not wisely but too well.

AHA

I just had a wonderful AHA. You know what that is?

A moment of insight, a peek thru the veil at this time of Samhain.

There are citations missing…unawarded decorations.

I did some dangerous things. I did some brave things.

You know what?

Every single thing that I did in Vietnam was part of my job.

So we’re good.

ATONEMENT

A couple years ago, I did something that was dishonorable. Today I did what I could, to make amends. A young and promising artist had offered me a lead role in her film project. I accepted. Her story was complicated science fiction, involving gods and humans. I had a million questions…some were answered, others not.
I struggled with my text. It wasn’t that considerable but I’d never before encountered such difficulty, owning my words.

We began to film, it did not go well. I spoke critically to her and in front of her crew. Her filming process was not helpful to me; regardless, my job is to own my text…and I couldn’t. We wrapped with the opening scene undone. Thereafter followed email exchanges, increasingly more hostile.

Had I been more self-critical, I might have realized that something had perhaps changed for me, mentally…and memorization had just become more difficult. Some of us read sign better than others.

Today I wrote to ask her forgiveness. I can hope…

Few years back, I had an encounter with a fellow actor during a production. We’d never before exchanged a single cross word. He made a few sudden demands pre -show that I thought were selfish, unprofessional and disrespectful to me. We soldiered on, the run was good. And I never spoke a single word to this actor thruout the whole run – except when on stage. That was strange…but for me, trust is a core fundamental.

Last year this actor contacted me. Explained he’d been living in a difficult personal reality. I understood…and him copping to that was really all I needed to just let it go.

We are all just flesh and blood. But we can all clean up the shit we generate along the way. That still has honor.