Claudine Jones-Scene4 Magazine

Claudine Jones

Fond & Foolish Hopes

My oldest son advises many things computer-related:

take a screen shot when you get an error notice 

don't click on something suspicious, followed by

suspect everything, and my favorite, when someone starts a flame-war never respond.


I can do this easily. (That I spend any of my precious moments on earth on Facebook or any other social media is another subject.) The crazy-quilt of 'friends' lures us in, as it was meant to, just to see if some one has anything interesting going on.


Found out yesterday for example, that my good old boss at the Shade Shop lost his wife last month & they are just now doing the memorial—I couldn't have gone unless I had a doppleganger—but it was a small gathering & I wasn't invited anyway. The point is that I was again faced with an empty slot wherein I could place a comment, or just let it float away.
I decided to put a simple :-( & within a couple of hours, I was liked for my effort.


I'm alone with my thoughts about her: she loved seeing me in various shows; she was kinda loopy & very funny. A bit harsh with certain business ethics: her motto was the customer is NOT always right. Anyway, I feel bad for her wiry little husband; he's a conservative small businessman, but also a thoroughly decent guy.


That's one facey that sticks out.  Or a couple of weeks ago—a post from one of the young  members of my '94 Grand Hotel
cast, who numbers among my FB theater bunch. He was appalled, as many were, by a Wells Fargo ad to the effect that (I'm paraphrasing) youngsters who yearn to be dancers or painters or, it seemed by implication, to be involved in any way in the arts, should hedge their bets by also planning to become biologists or lawyers or anything more likely to land them an actual paying job.


M was beyond enraged! He was apoplectic! 


I responded with the following: erm, badly expressed, but the idea is fundamentally sound: injury, age & the statistical probability that you will *not* make a living doing something like dance, theater or film. Learn a trade, dude. This is time honored & doesn't necessarily kill your dream. WF sucks, btw, as do all big banks.

September 3 at 9:54pm


9 days later, this shows up:


M So what I do isn't a trade?

September 12 at 11:46pm


M I guarantee I've studied music and theatre much longer than it would have taken to become a botanist. Isn't that a trade, dude?

September 12 at 11:47pm


M And, because it is statistically hard, no one should devote their life to it? Better to learn a trade?

September 12 at 11:49pm


That's cut & pasted; for clarity I also re-read the original stuff & there were a lot of replies, before mine & after, mostly along the lines of what? That's harsh! And thanks, M, for bringing this
& quite a few longer, pensive & questioning replies. Interesting stuff. He smacked their heads, too, some of them.


But to re-engage? Myself? Nope. M said what he had to say. I have my own views (as stated) & I got no call to lay out my life-story in defense of those views...but I will say, the discussion by & large seemed not to be in my demographic. I should have stayed out of it. The people in that conversation could be my children.


That makes me some doddering mother-figure, stuck in the
past, licking my scabby wounds, reliving failed auditions, surviving rat-bastard directors—actually more likely psychotic scene partners—reaching for the do-over switch.


That makes me pissed-off.


I see so many confident, creative older people—in choir work, at the committees, good buddies from school, hell, even R's friends from the MIT fraternity, who have become friend-ish to me, & who love to attend gatherings of global meanderers all of whom have ΤΕΦ  in common—relics who might probably want to sit this puppy (see above) down & have a chat with him about what it means to give up a dream.


Fucking nerve.


The more I think about it the more I really would like to get into it with people who have, or seem to have, some notion that it's anything but sheer bloody luck that they get actual results from this dream—whatever the fuck that means anyway—grasping, wrestling it to the ground, making that cock-sucker pay some dividends.


Okay, now I'm hungry; I've been waiting to get hungry as part of my new regime & along with the water-rower, it's getting me where I want to be. 


R is outside, though, busy with an old hammer smashing up larger pieces of a broken jug that probably was knocked over by a squirrel, & putting them in an old Jiffy padded envelope. He's mad that it didn't go out yesterday with the bulky pick-up.


I told him break-schmake tomorrow something else will go to pieces & we'll deal with it.


—                                    —                                  —


I've calmed down. We went to a movie—something we haven't done in a long time—walking back down Shattuck Avenue, trying to time the lights. We must walk just a hair too slow, but no big deal. It was a good film & I might have been in the mood since I'm reading dysfunctional family & living dysfunctional family.  What a sweet night, though: the moon just heading towards full, the middle of the week & we have Jacob to look forward to on Friday afternoon, & social/greening/justice/peace event later before incidental Shabbat services we won't attend. The upshot is that the world is very large, some of us are in the gloom & in great need of shared light & we'll try to send as much of it to them as we can.GazaLight-cr

I'm gonna cut that FB puppy some slack. I remember being that furious & it just feels like...well, just let him have it.


No big deal, sweetie. 

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Actor/Singer/Dancer Claudine Jones has worked steadily in Bay Area joints for a number of decades.
She writes a monthly column and is
a Senior Writer for Scene4.
For more of her commentary and articles, check the Archives.

©2016 Claudine Jones
©2016 Publication Scene4 Magazine




October 2016

Volume 17 Issue 5

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