A Life Time of Stupid


I started to think about the times in my life when I did something stupid, acted stupidly, reacted, or blurted out something brainless. I could go back a few days ago and find multiple examples but then I realized I could go back months, years and then the big realization was that I could go back decades and list stupid things all day long, every day, this was going to be way too painfully easy, really…painful.
Listening to my friend Dee Dee made perfect sense at the time when she told me to shave my legs at age 13. That was just me acting like me, being slow on the uptake and easily persuaded. Everyone else knows better than I do, don’t they? Everyone else is an expert at everything and I’m not. So, of course I went along with that idiotic idea and am now of course trapped in that stupid moment for the rest of my life.
That seemingly minor act, was irreversible and has become a lifelong task. That should have been a warning for things to come. But it didn’t really start there. Going to my friends house when I was told to stay home earned me – what I thought, was an undeserved spanking. I went to Josie’s house every day, what was different on this day, why did I have to listen this time? I was about seven then. So as you can see, ‘stupid’ and I are old friends. Wait, this is a good one. I was about five years old when I got my head stuck in between the levels of my brother’s bunk bed. That got everyone’s attention! But did I really learn from it?
Aren’t we supposed to learn from our stupid mistakes? Well, logically yes, I don’t stick my head in between bunk beds anymore but how could that help me when I was 19 years old, opting to quit college in order to move to another state because of accepting a marriage proposal from a looser? Stupid. How and where does the lesson from shaving my legs or the bunk bed fit in?
Following this line of logic, I’ll never learn. There might never be another bunk bed incident but how many other never-before-experienced-events will there be that I’ll know the right answer to, or do I have to continually stick my head between the bunks (figuratively speaking of course).
Yes, I’ve had numerous accounts of stupid. A lifetime of stupid. If stupid acts were water I could fill a lake. I’ve even had a few stupid moments with famous people, that still haunt me.
One time when I was hired just for the day, filling in for a sick makeup artist, to help on a film with some really big stars, I think I blocked the name of the film and the star, but maybe it I think it could have been Denzel Washington, I am just not totally sure. My friend Terri, another makeup artist, was already in the makeup trailer working with someone and Betty the wardrobe lady had the back filled to capacity with racks of clothes and equipment and when I arrived there was also another guy with a video camera shooting every angle of the tight space. The trailer was a teeny tiny one, not the massive ones they show us from Hollywood. It was so cramped I could hardly get my makeup bags in the door and no one was saying anything to the guy with the camera. Not pausing for a second to wonder why no one said anything, I blurted out something about it being too tight in here for shooting. Terri shot me a look of panic and fear while the guy with the camera slowly came out from behind the lens. Mr. Washington, the videographer, also shot me a look but it was of disgust not fear. A sinking-feeling-with-foot-in-mouth-shaved-legs and bunk-beds came washing over me. Inside my ever reddening face some never before heard expletives were pounding away at my temples.
This was stupid at its finest! Later I heard him talking to the director pointing at me and laughing. To this day I imagine him showing his piece of video from the makeup trailer to all his LA superstar friends while they howled with laughter at the dumb-outspoken-makeup artist. “Didn’t she know who you were?” they were all saying in my nightmare.
Well, the point is the same, when will I ever be in a makeup trailer again with Denzel Washington? I would wager a small bet that they never want to see my face again, so where is the lesson in that? I have however been practicing keeping my mouth shut for the last 25 years since that happened and of course been scolded for keeping my mouth shut when I was supposed to say something. I find myself stuttering with indecision, do I tell them the star is throwing up in the bathroom and that’s why he’s late getting to set, do I tell them the truth that the talent is drunk and can’t act anyway so why not get someone else or should I just say I don’t know where they are Mr. Spielberg? You see the problem? This little game of learning from one’s mistakes has gotten me totally confused about my role. If it were Denzel in the bathroom throwing up, I’d know exactly what to say, “The trailer is too small Mr. Spielberg, can you please give Mr. Washington some room?” I just don’t get it.

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3 thoughts on “A Life Time of Stupid

  1. The “stupid” person was the videographer in the trailer. You were the smart person pointing out the futile effort to video in such a small space. What gives him the right to criticize you for being honest and speaking truth? Yeah, you spoke the truth!!!

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