March Madness

Mar 31, 2013 by

Here we are on the final day of March 2013, and I have embarked upon my final journey of the month.

I’m currently in the air (in first class!) flying over the Grand Canyon on my way to LA, after spending time in Texas and Louisiana already this month.  Today I will find myself in Los Angeles (on Easter!), still way undertanned and conspicuously non-famous.  Yes, I have spent 10 of the previous 30 days travelling out of state, which is both exciting and exhausting.  For added kicks, Miles and I decided to start the process of purchasing our very first home this month as well.  Yowza.  It’s been real, March ’13.

At the beginning of March, I visited Austin, TX for the SXSW Film Festival, representing a movie for one of my social media clients, John Sayles.  The film is called GO FOR SISTERS, and you might remember that I tried to accidentally sabotage it with my discomfort one day on set last August.  Since then, I’ve done (and am still doing) a lot of work to promote the movie and its director/screenwriter, and I’ve also seen it three times.  It’s really good, people, and one of the few narrative features at SXSW this year whose protagonists were non-white and older than thirty.  If you like John Sayles’s previous features like Lone Star and Matewan, you will seriously dig GO FOR SISTERS.

By the way, the take of my freezing up because Harold Perrineau talked to me, the one that caused the entire cast and crew to burst into hysterical laughter as soon as someone yelled “cut”… yeah, that’s the take they use in the movie.  Natch.

With Hillary on the Step and Repeat

I got to do quite a bit of the “festival experience” at SXSW, which is all new to me.  I got a film badge (for free!), which meant I could see any movie playing.  And there were hundreds.  I sat down and made an elaborate schedule of everything that looked interesting, which went immediately out the window as soon as I actually got to Austin and my work event commitments took over.  However, I did manage to catch a screening of a feature called Imagine, about a blind man teaching blind children to walk without canes using highly unconventional methods, and also Joss Whedon’s new take on Much Ado About Nothing, shot in secret in twelve days at his home.  Both of those films were fantastic, and you’ll probably hear a lot about one and not much about the other, but both are definitely worth checking out.

At famous dinner

I also got to hang out with some friends and a few famous people, rode in pedicabs, ate breakfast tacos, and saw Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s ear.  I took my first picture in front of a step-and-repeat with my pal Hillary (who also worked on GO FOR SISTERS), and hung out with my friend Crystal’s two awesome dogs.  I ate Indian food with my friend Eric and grits with Edward James Olmos.  I drove a Kia Soul, my favorite rental car experience to date.  I bought new sandals and got terrible blisters.  I got a free first-class upgrade on the way home thanks to my Silver Preferred status.  I got to see Amanda Palmer and Neil Gaiman and Jenny Owen Youngs read letters live and in person.  It was awesome.

Oh, and my name in the credits of a real indie movie.  For real.  A kind surprise that I got at the premiere.

That's me!

After SXSW, I was home for a week before I headed down to Louisiana to see the premiere production of my play A Place to Land at Acadiana Repertory Theatre in Lafayette.

During that week, our adorable pup Boudin went in (to a vet we will never see again) to get “fixed,” and came home with a very serious infection and a fever.  We ended up at the emergency vet with him twice in three days, and the sight of him pitiful and shaking, unable to walk or eat or even drink water, was one of the most frightening experiences of my adult life.  But I’m happy to report that thanks to the fantastic and compassionate folks at VCA Highlands Animal Hospital, and their miraculous painkillers and antibiotics, Boudin is now up and at ’em, back to his old tricks (minus his manhood).

Cold compress. Poor little boy.

The ART production of A Place to Land was magnificent, the crowds were great, and I couldn’t be happier about the way it all turned out.  I finally was able to bring my parents and friends I grew up with to a full production of one of my plays, in Louisiana, for the first time since I moved away in 2006.  The fine, friendly folks at Acadiana Repertory Theatre are absolute superstars, and I hope that A Place to Landmarks the beginning of many, many collaborations to come.

Me with the cast and director of A Place to Land

While in Louisiana, I also got to eat gumbo and crawfish with my family, go shopping with my mom, and give a special gift to my two best buddies, Claudia and Lauren.  We’ve been the best of pals since we met at French Camp in Nova Scotia during high school, and we’ve seen each other through weddings, breakups, cross-country moves, family crises, existential panics, pregnancy, and lots and lots of very loud conversation.  We call ourselves The Tripod. 

Photo credit: Tripod mascot Young Jonathan

Since we’re all turning 30 this year, I though it appropriate to mark the occasion with matching Tripod necklaces, which I found on Etsy.  I’ve worn mine pretty much every day since.

Soon after returning to Abingdon from Louisiana, Miles and I went to look at a few more houses.

We’ve been touring properties since February, and working with a really dynamite buyer’s agent named Cindy.  There was a home we liked last month that we nearly put an offer on, but decided against it.  Then, just a few days ago, Cindy took us to see a house on Maiden Street, and we fell in love.  It’s at the top of our price range, but it was bar none our favorite listing to date.  We crunched some numbers (with the help of my CPA father) and figured out how to make it all work with our budget and some new austerity measures and belt-tightening.  But still, we hesitated.  We made an offer, the seller made a counter offer.  We countered the counter offer, the sellers stood firm.  We slept on it.  We talked about it, every aspect of it, relentlessly.  We consulted our parents.  We ran it by the dog.  And yesterevening, we signed on the dotted line.

I didn’t get a wink of sleep last night.

There are still a lot of steps to go through before the house is ours, and I feel awful leaving Miles to start the process without me while I’m in LA (seeing a reading of my play Devour – my first Los Angeles reading!).  I don’t want to say too much for fear of jinxing things, but the ball is rolling, and if all goes well we’ll be moving into our first home in mid-May.

The front porch has a lovely view of the mountains.

And Happy Easter from Boudin!

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