JUDITH, LIGHT MY FROZEN HEART
I hate show business, I hate show business, I HATE SHOW BUSINESS. To all four of you fellow, dedicated readers of my past entries, please allow yourselves to soar to the highest winds of Hollywood hypocrisy and heartbreak. Indeed, I pledge to offer words where innocence is lost, but please do believe that I maintained levels of naivete that I was once too proud to admit. Dreams die harder than pride and apparently my pride is dead. Gone. Adios. Besame el culo.
With my tremendous financial debt and difficulty in finding enough money to purchase a bagel, most people would find my willingness to spend $30 on a boxed lunch and script reading to be in excess. However, I never felt one could put a monetary value on the realization of dreams. Accompanying this expensive lunch was the once in a LIFETIME opportunity of meeting Judith Light. Being she is not ten percent of the caliber Bette Midler or Barbra Streisand (two women whom I both came across), I assumed she would maintain a high level of humility and compassion. I mean the woman spends two hours a month speaking with callers about blackheads and pimple pus, with an intense empathatic approach. Judith Light simply HAD to be the mentor I always sought, the kind gem amidst the hard stones of the industry, and the ONE woman I could trust.
I had been considering taking a Greyhound to Philly at 2 AM and then take a cab from Philly to Amish country in order to make it to the QVC Studios and catch my one inspiration. However, the very same week the chance arose for me to attend a special script reading by the one and only Judith Light. Granted, sharing my news with friends and collegues sought little encouragement as most of them asked, “Who the hell is that?” When I replied, Angela from Who’s The Boss, I found some support and interest. However,to me, Ms. Light was the “Meryl Streep of television,” the heartwarming female role model of Who’s The Boss?, but most importantly, a woman whom I hoped to glean insight and understanding. What I should have truly asked for was an acting class, because apparently that is all it took for her.
Upon arriving at the ritzy, artsy-fartsy, museum I should have relinquished fear of imposing upon this former angelic “Angela.” Certainly an anomoly, I was surrounded by post-menapausal, post-hip replacement, and post-breathing women who looked down upon my poor black rags from Macy’s. One of their fur coats could have covered my $30,000 debt of student loans and life expenses for the next ten years.
After nervously noshing watercress and appetizers of canine-quality cuisine, I admired the intensity of Ms. Light’s performance. Her command reached to my very being at a level that I was simply abashed and fearful. Her booming voice and pristine usage of the word “f***” made me once again recognize the extensive versatility and passionate force she shared with us.
After a warm and light Q&A, it was time to join Judith in the grand parlor for cocktails and praise. Though my dear friend insisted upon hiding out in a separate wing of the parlor, I nervously chatted with the surrounding theatre and art hounds who passed my intellect and sense of humour off as unnecessary. After fifteen minutes of lingering and three carelessly swallowed glasses of wine (despite the fact I am minor), I was truly prepared to meet my inspiration. Ms. Light’s authority and strength hardly translated to warmth and charisma, as my friend and former Judith Light fan refused to impose. She was simply too intimidated by the glitz, glamour, and gregariously grotesque group.
Not me, though. No siree, I was destined to meet Ms.Light and not return home with a siren of regrets that have haunted my soul on many sleepless nights because I simply missed a chance, not wanting to impose on people whom I admired. I approached Ms. Light and was slightly alarmed by her austere and apathetic welcome to my starry-eyes and hopeful heart. I nearly cleared my bank of its last final thirty dollars to see this woman and I just wanted to express my profound respect for her.
Well forget about that. Ms. Light awkwardly smiled to the camera and I said my friend was highly intimidated by her and such a true fan, I expected the warm Ms. Light I knew to be understanding. However, she coldly remarked in a voice that froze my warm and nearly inebriated blood, “Well she’ll have to learn to get over her intimidation. I have to go.” Had she been joking in that charming, sensitive voice that lures Proactiv guinea pigs to spend fortunes on benzyne peroxide and simply “trust her,” I could take it. Her voice was in an unbearable timbre of Ethel Merman, that simply caused the crystal chandeliers above head to jingle and jangle. Why hadn’t I taken the eccentric, effervescent approach and ran to her screaming with open arms, “My pores are clean! My pores are clean! And all thanks to you.” Undoubtedly such histrionics would find her humility amidst the pretentious playwright and regal attendees.
Of course, Ms. Light passed me aside and hurried with her elitist entourage while I stood in shock. For being in such a rush, she managed to stand schmoozing for another ten minutes, while her co-star and the most charming, graceful, and charismatic man I have ever met saved the day. This actor stars on Third Watch and showed a diversity in the two reading beyond the capacity of Ms. Light. He smoothly greeted my friend and nearly carried her to Ms. Light, as my eyes seriously and disappointedly revealed “Don’t even ask.”
Ms. Light involuntarily posed for the photo with my friend, as I stood watching with an uneasiness and rejection that could sink the Titanic once again. Ms. Light eventually left and I placed my knees upon the wealthy, oriental carpet and thanked God for the open bar. After a few more glasses of wine, I gave one last cheer to another shattered dream….
“There were times… I lost a dream or two. Found a trail and at the end was you. There’s a chance to take and the chance not taken. The choice is up to you my friend. Night’s are long, but you’re wide awake…with a brand new life. Brand new life. Brand new life around the bend.”
Cheers to my brand new, Judith Light-free life around the bend.
*On a further note, I must say her people are incredible and manager, Herb, was brimming with charisma and charm.