Friday, March 26, 2010

Dear Ben Folds,

Despite the fact that whilst rocking out to this particular song I gave myself whiplash, it helped me out by being an outlet for my teenage angst:

So thanks. I plan on hiring you for a month to follow me around and make up songs about me as I walk. Just so you know. It's coming.

Love, Tanika

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Dear People of the Performing Arts,

In order to save myself from becoming the biggest hypocrite on the face of the planet, please remember this particular blog is more of a vent than anything. If you're currently in a show with me, DO NOT read this blog.

In the rehearsal process, unless you are a director or captain of sorts, or have been told by a director or captain of sorts to do so (and ALL of your cast members know it), do not tell other people what to do. Ever. Once you do, you have crossed a major line as a performer, and there's no going back. You have created an unnecessary hierarchy in which you are the resented dictator.

I know you may think you are being helpful, and in some ways you are, but more often than not it will cause your fellow performers to resent you. Personally, if I were a director and one of my cast members started to take over, I would make a mental note to never cast that person again, and I would inform other directors of your tendency to control. Seriously, it's not a good thing to do.

If you notice that some people are doing things wrong, ASK the director to go over or clarify what you have noticed. Do not raise your hand and then make an announcement to the cast about it. Do not even utter the phrase "I've noticed some people doing..." Pointing out others' mistakes makes you a target. People will now watch you. And they will notice every single one of your mistakes. It's particularly funny when you make the same mistake that you've been harping on with others. And believe me, it will happen. 

You are a performer. You are part of the cast. No matter how significant your role is, no matter how well you've grasped a concept that others are not getting, you are not the director. The director is the director. Let them do their job. Again, if something isn't going the way its supposed to (notice that I did not say how YOU think its supposed to) go to the director. It's even more appropriate to go to the director privately. Unless it's a social problem that needs to be addressed for the well-being and unity of the cast and certain people need to be dealt with by an authority, do not mention names. Just name the problem. In question form. 

The only time it is appropriate to help someone is if they ask for it, and only if it's about something technical, like a certain step or part of a song. Do not help with character work. If they ask for it, tell them to go to the director. Also, this help should be on your and the asker's own time, not while the director is giving instruction. If someone asks for your help during that time, say, "I don't know!" in a kind and friendly way, then raise your hand. 

If you address a problem, and the director fixes it once, but people continue to make the mistake, this STILL does not give you permission to tell your fellow cast members what to do. Just ask to go over it again. This may make you look a little slow of learning, but that's better than crossing the directing line. In all honesty, if the director doesn't work the problem until it's completely resolved, it's probably a bigger deal to you than it is to them, and your opinion doesn't really matter. If the director does go over the problem again and again and people still miss it, chances are they realized their mistake as they were making it. At that point, it is their responsibility to resolve the issue themselves. Not yours.

A side note on a minor form of this breach: shushing. It's annoying. If the director is trying to get the cast's attention, sit quietly and be attentive to the director. Wait for others to notice what you're doing. If they don't, it's their loss. And focusing on their inattentiveness will only make you miss instruction more. It's amazing what apathy for a possible annoyance can do to your happiness level. 

In short, worry about yourself. Take care of yourself. Be friendly and sociable and helpful when appropriate. Good for you for excelling; lead by nonverbal example. People will like you a lot more, and people won't write blogs like this about you. 

Love, Tanika

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Dear Chinese Zodiac,

For years (most of my life, really) I've thought I was the Year of the Horse. But, alas, I have been horribly mistaken. Because my birthday falls before the Chinese New Year, it turns out I'm the Year of the Snake.

This has shaken my world, and now I feel I need to transfer to Slytherin.

Love, Tanika

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Dear Icy Hot,

You smell like mint. My lovely mother bought some for me to put on my legs after doing so much bending and stretching at rehearsal, and I lathered away, in my room and with the door closed.

Not two minutes later, I heard one of my roommates say to the other, "Do you smell mint?"

"Yes!" said the other, "And is smells sooooo good. Do you know what that is? It's making me hungry."

"I have no idea, but I really really want some, too."

I've stayed in my room ever since, hoping they continue to hunger after the cream on my knees.

Love, Tanika

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Dear Pandora,

Thank you.

You give me music (particularly on my "Home" station) I actually want. And if I don't want it, I can tell you and then you apologize to me. Then you never ever play it again. I should learn to be like you. Also, thank you for introducing me to artists in this genera I love so much. The genera I call, "Too good to play on the radio." I'm sure it has a real name, but once I look it up, it'll become this thing, and no longer the general essence of my life. Anyway, thanks for knowing it exists and letting me listen to it.

To make a really awful music cliché, you rock.

Love, Tanika

Friday, March 5, 2010

Dear Spinning Beach Ball of Death,

Yes, I'm talking about YOU:

Also known as Marble of Doom,

You make my computer life a living Hell. Every time I see you, tension fills body almost to Hulk-like proportions, and I must do everything I can to not throw the nearest, blunt object at the screen. I find your beautiful color scheme mockingly ironic.

Love, Tanika

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Dear Men in Relationships,

I have some rules for you. Kudos if you already apply them, but I know there are enough of you out there who aren't that this must be said.

1. When you are in a relationship, the person you talk to about your relationship the most is your girlfriend. Not your other friends who are girls. NEVER, EVER complain about your relationship to other girls. You have no idea how many of those girls are sitting there trying to be helpful when all they're really thinking is, "If she sucks this bad, why don't you just dump her and jump me already?" Unless you know some seriously cool, 100% complete lesbian, your best friend of the opposite sex should be your girlfriend. SHE is the one you love. SHE is the one you should want to talk to the most. If you need to vent, write in your journal. Then talk to your girlfriend about the issue.

2. You can flirt with other girls, as long as it's completely harmless and happens rarely. DO NOT flirt over facebook or some other public forum where your girlfriend can accidentally come across some comment you left on your hot friend's suggestive picture. That makes it really easy for both the girl you're flirting with and your girlfriend to read whatever you wrote over and over again. As I said before, you never know when that other girl may be really interested in you.

3. Emotionally cheating is still cheating. Even if you aren't doing anything physical with some other girl, if you find yourself wanting to spend more time with or talk to her more often than you do with your girlfriend, you have a problem. I don't care how close you were to this girl before you started dating your girlfriend. I don't care if you really think there's no way a relationship would work with her. If you had to choose between your girlfriend and this girl, and you have to think about it for more than 10 seconds, you need to reevaluate your relationship and have the guts to do something about it. This isn't high school. Friends don't come first anymore.

4. There is no such thing as "The One," at least in the sense of what that usually means. If you're going through relationships thinking, "Someday I'll find the one whom I will never want to cheat on. She'll be all I'll ever want, and suddenly I won't be attracted to any other girls. I won't stop looking until I find her!" you will continue looking until you become that creepy old man who lives at the end of the street that all the parents warn their young teenage girls to stay away from. Finding true happiness in relationships comes from choosing to focus those desires on that one person and making it work with this girl who's crazy enough to make it work with you, too. Love isn't something that can stand on its own; it must be cultivated constantly. You don't find the one, you create the one.

I know this could take a 180 and switch the genders of the situation. I just find that in my life, this is an issue with guys a lot more than it is with girls.

Also, I know some of you may be thinking, "Wow, this is a potentially seriously jealous girlfriend talking here." You may have a relationship where these offenses I've discussed are not considered as such. That's called an open relationship, and if it stays that way, you aren't going anywhere with this girl.   If you're saying you'll commit, then commit.

Love, Tanika

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Dear Certain Customers of a Certain Restaurant,

I promise you, I will make the sandwich the way you like it if you tell me how to make it. Especially if you choose to call the sandwich you want by its name as stated on the menu, then give me whatever variation you want. We'll all be a lot happier that way.

Love, Tanika

Dear Reader,

A lot of the time, I tend to think in letter format; particularly when there are things I wish I could say, but for propriety's sake, I refrain. I've created this blog so that I may manifest those letters in my head to the world. It's more fore me than it is for you, so... have at thee.

Love, Tanika