Having trained as an actor at drama school for three intense years makes me an actor. It must be so. Having appeared in a few short and feature films must make me an actor. It has to be so. Auditioning for Casting Directors and having an agent must mean that I am indeed an actor. But is that what I am?
I think, our society expects people to fit job titles depending on the services and utilities they provide, from the blacksmith of the fort to the banker, to the IT professional. But are any of us the categorized job descriptions of our workplace?
I am not an actor, I am a man. Distinguishable from a woman, sometimes. I’m a dog owner. I am my dog’s friend. I depend on my dog for the services and assistance it provides me with.
I’m someone who writes as a means of expression. I write down thoughts, sometimes translating them into plays, scripts, scenes or songs.
I’m someone with a significant interest in current affairs, I read the New York Times every morning and before I go to sleep. I keep up with Luxembourgish politics, European politics, global affairs and sometimes even with the film industry on IMDb.
I enjoy thinking, debating, arguing. I enjoy making a meal for myself, for my family – my friends. I enjoy cooking. I take long walks at the Heath (my local forest in North London).
My ambition is to live, and enjoy my life, make a contribution to the world. I am not an actor, I’m another human being who enjoys acting as part of a larger groups storytelling to create a work of art that tells a story – sometimes.
There is a danger in being your job title. Especially in this line of work. Because what are you, when you’re out of work? Is an out-of-work actor an actor? And if we’re not – then what are we? And thus the insecurities creep up, the hardship of defining yourself and giving yourself self-worth. We can’t allow ourselves to be our job titles. We are, what we are, day in and day out and there must be a bigger meaning and sense of being of our contribution the world than our work title, whether you do it 9-5 every day or for a few weeks a few times a year.
We are all worthy, and we are all 100% of the time, useful and doing something. There is no need to choose between the many versions of you and me. Be all of them, at once, all the time.
Again, this is written as thought – so the stream of thought might not be perfectly articulate. I hope you understand what I mean, if you’re reading this.
Good day sir. I said good day.
pictures by Meurigh Marshall