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Archive for October 2nd, 2008

Tampon Commercial is My Huge Break

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When I was a kid I had wild, lofty and unrealistic expectations for what I wanted to be when I grew up. I’m not sure where they came from, who put the ideas in my head, or why it happened. I do know that even as my tastes, styles, dreams and goals changed, my ambitions always remained firmly planted in the “never gonna happen” category. The one pertinent to tonight’s blog, which is probably fairly common, is that I wanted to be an actor.

I started acting pretty young, in a summer camp, couple of weeks, and workshop at a “Center for the Arts”. I remember the teacher being rather impressed with me and offering me the lead role, even though I had not expressed an interest. I did some work for a children’s theatre group that put on around six productions a year. I eventually lost interest because I was frustrated with the politics of the group, (the kids whose rich parents gave to the business end of it, received the role of their choice without having to audition). After that I joined a traveling improv group that performed for kids at public libraries. I don’t remember how that ended. Over the next couple of years I did a play here and there, even got a little praise and recognition. Eventually, I walked away from acting and wasted my life, er… I mean, time elsewhere. Several years later I tried to “get back in the game” by auditioning for a couple of roles. At one of my auditions, the director stopped me in the middle of my lines, to basically tell me I sucked and to stop smacking my lips. I tried another audition, this time an independent, low-budget film being directed by a guy I had known from being in a production together. I read my lines and when I was done, he had the weirdest look on his face, like he’d just seen some ultra hot chick pull down her pants and she had a penis. He asked me, “Um… do you want to try it again?” I knew I had blown it, that I lacked the spark that I once had, (if I ever had it at all). I kindly said no, thanked him and left. I have never done anything like that since.

Why am I telling you all this? The answer is simple, to illustrate that I have been in the acting world, met people who were acting crazy, people who have certain characteristics only belonging to people who want to be actors. Do I have NYC experience? Did I take a leap of faith and travel to the scary cities to really give it a go? No, but I had enough of a taste to get to the point of tonight’s blog.

When I watch TV and I see any commercial that has to do with something that’s “of a private nature” or perhaps embarrassing, dealing with a subject that no normal person would discuss out loud, (I’m talking about tampon, hemorrhoid, diarrhea, douche, jock itch, adult diaper, all vaginal infection cream, erectile dysfunction medicine and any other type of commercial in that genre) all I can think of is some actor calling on the phone, bursting through the door or dropping by to see someone in person, bubbling with excitement, dying to spill the beans, “Hey, guess what! I got the tampon commercial! We start tomorrow!” So while all the rest of us watch and say to ourselves, “How embarrassing. Who would want to do a diarrhea commercial?” Someone is throwing a huge party to celebrate and might be saying, “This is it! This is where my career takes off!” So suddenly commercials that used to represent an almost creepy, disgusting annoyance, now are down right entertaining to watch. The more serious the actor, the funnier it is to me.

I wonder if one of these actors has ever been stopped on the street. Here’s how I imagine the conversation going, “Hey aren’t you that guy from the jock itch commercial? I love that part where you look like it really itches and you’re totally uncomfortable. Can I have your autograph? Thanks! Nah that’s alright, you can keep the pen.”

Egg On,

Ramblin’ Rooster

Written by Ramblin' Rooster

October 2, 2008 at 3:39 am