Monday, July 1, 2013

Social Media Angst

So a Time Magazine poll said 70+ percent of Americans surveyed think that other people make their lives seem better on social media than they actually are.

Here's my conundrum.

When I began using social media (I mean LiveJournal in 2000. It counts!), it was full of angst. I only really used it when I was feeling angsty, so it's full of long blog posts about feeling ignored or misunderstood or about my obsessive sadness over girls who didn't want to date me... Stuff like that.

Now, yes. I use social media to talk about what I'm doing - in particular, professionally. And if I'm doing things, I'm glad I'm doing things. It's not doing things that makes me sad. But there's not really news in that. I suppose I could post daily: "Still not making a decent living out of acting. Bummer."

It's also a repository for photos. I take photos when I'm doing something that people take photos for. People don't think "I need a photo of this argument I'm having."

I suppose I occasionally use it for politics.

But is there a way to be honest with the world? Not that that's anybody's duty.

Well, to that end, here are the things that bum me out. Here's some circa 2000 angstiness:

Am I even remotely good enough? There's, like, layers of success. I feel old sometimes when I realize that other people are many strata above me and are younger. A year ago, I was okay telling myself, "I've made tremendous strides since moving to L.A., I'll definitely keep moving forward. And I'm ready." This year has felt more like "I hit a wall. I can do what I've done. My opportunities have caught up to my abilities. This is where I stand." I want to be on the layer that... Well, that's more than one above me. I haven't moved up any layers. And the opportunities are there. I've auditioned a few times for things that are the next level up. I'm not even booking as regularly in the level that I thought I had achieved. Maybe I even moved down a level. Gah!

I guess everything is related to that. The next section is titled, "Am I always going to be poor?" I guess we don't have to be as poor as we are. I could stop trying so hard to make a living as an actor and get a something-dollars-an-hour wage job. The way Stina and I live, even if we both just had part-time minimum wage jobs (30*2*52*$8=a lot more than we make now), we could start building our savings back up, and start dreaming realistically of our one and only financial goal: home ownership. We could even occasionally treat our friends to drinks. But the thought of giving up is super-duper depressing. We weren't happier in Seattle. We had more money, and in that way we were happier. I can't speak for Stina, but I get the chills - the good chills - sometimes here. The "If this works, I will achieve everything I've ever dreamed of" chills.

Section 3: WHAT HAVE I BECOME? Did I forget that I want to be an artist? That I'd always told myself I could be happy with no money, as long as I was making art I cared about? Was that ever true? Do I just like it when people tell me "good job"? Or when I feel like I deserve that? Both? Is this all self-indulgent tripe?  Am I working on my craft? Am I resting on my laurels? If I love this so much, why do I spend any time playing stupid video games? Do I even care about my art/craft? Am I lazy? WHAT'S WRONG WITH ME?

And that, in a nutshell, is the angst. Back to our regularly scheduled, "Things are going super-well!" programming in just a bit, But first, a word from our sponsors:

Check out the Top Decking crowdfunding campaign on Webisodes Network! (It's not up yet, but it should be soon.)

And these guys paid me, plus I got to meet the man behind Avenue Q: Fresh and Easy

1 comment:

Anim Cara said...