Come Monday

Saturday and Sunday I have off. It’s the first weekend I’ve had off since the move to Venice that I didn’t actually request off for a wedding or something. I try to enjoy it, but it’s difficult knowing I don’t have a full-time job. The weekend is uneventful since I’m trying not to spend money, so I hang out at the beach.

Sunday is football. I love that games start at 10am. Make myself some pumpkin coffee and stay in bed watching the TV, pretending it’s a little chilly outside like it probably is back home, even though it’s really hot today. I’m in a fantasy league this year with a bunch of the girls. I’ve done it before but didn’t pay attention at all, so this year I’m trying to really get into it. My team is the California Dreamers. Mike will probably help me every week. Today is also the first day of the field hockey Fall league. Patti and Rebecca emailed me to see if I’d be there, and thankfully Mike doesn’t have work. I leave around 12 for my 1:30 game. So excited to play. I really miss hockey and pre-season, and that smell of the season beginning. It’s pretty much the same smell as football.

Field hockey is all the way up near the Simi Valley, about an hour away. I step out of my car into the heat – it’s so much hotter here than down by the beach. It’s even worse on the turf. I do a little stick work on the side while games are still going on – barely moving – and get winded. Not a good sign. The Fall league is 6v6 across the width of the field with three games going on at once. We play 25 minute halves today with two subs. I start in the back on the left side, just where I like to be. As soon as I bend down and start to move I can feel my muscles wanting to spasm. I haven’t even done anything yet. I’m screwed. What is happening to me? I haven’t even been in the game for ten minutes and I’m done. If the ball comes near me now, I’ll be useless. I call for a sub. This happens three more times during the game. I used to be one of those players who refused to come out of the game. I’ve never called for a sub more than one time during a game, and that was a rarity. This is just unacceptable. Incredibly embarrassed. The players and coaches say it’s really hot and it’s our first game and blah blah blah. None of it makes me feel better. I’m trying to figure out if I’m just getting old or if there is really something wrong with me. Hopefully, there is really something wrong with me.

Monday I get a call from Brian, the manager at Brick+Mortar. He has a server leaving at the end of the month, but he could use me as a hostess until then. OK, sure, I can do that. “Can you come in tonight?” No, I have a writer’s group tonight. Why do I have to give a reason? I always feel like I have to justify what I’m doing, even when being asked to work hours before the shift. Just say no. “How about tomorrow? I need you to fill out some paperwork.” Yes. “How about noon?” Yes, I’ll be there.

Later, I drive over to the writer’s group. We actually have a Facebook page. A very creative name if you want to look it up. It’s “Monday Writer’s Group.” Meet Kyle outside and we walk in together. Dane starts with me immediately. “Oh, you brought her again?” Are you being rude already? He will later email me and apologize for his sarcasm. Some people are definitely more sarcastic than others, but I’m starting to think I bring it out of them. I’m always ready/looking for a fight without even realizing it.

There’s a few people tonight who I haven’t met. There’s a girl, Valaria (probably butchering her name), who is a producer. There’s also a couple, Zach and Lys (Lease). We start getting into the production side of things. Zach and Lys had this idea for an anthology called Conversations in Cars: a bunch of shorts taking place in or around a vehicle. They’ve already written some but it hasn’t really taken off yet. Valaria is no-nonsense. She gets right down to what we need to do and how we need to do it. Any time Dane tries to move on, she doesn’t let him until there is a plan of what steps to take. I like her. You need someone like her around. Otherwise, it’s a lot of talk and no action. Guess that’s why she’s a producer.

After Valaria leaves, we get to our writings. I’m glad I don’t have anything to share this week. I get to sit back and read Kyle and Zach’s spec scripts (speculative screenplays). These are basically made-up episodes of an already existing show. Both have written scripts for The Office. Kyle assigns us roles. I’m Pam. Kyle has written the pilot episode for the new season, which hasn’t aired yet. It is so good. It’s hilarious. He has everyone’s voice and personality captured in the lines. I laugh through most of it. We’re all having a lot of fun playing these roles, too. Zach is so good at Dwight, it’s scary. So impressed with Kyle right now. Writing a spec script seems really hard.

Next up is Zach. He’s only written the beginning of the episode. I’m Kelly in this one. I thought reading Pam was fun but Kelly is way, way more fun. Some of the group tells me I sound like her. Yes, I sound like the most obnoxious character on the show! I don’t care, she’s funny. Again, the script is hilarious, but short. Afterwards, we’re given our homework assignment: write at least one short for Conversations in Cars. First they say 3-9 pages, but Valaria said the shorter the better, so 2-3 pages. I already have an idea and am excited to start writing it.

*Jimmy Buffett

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