This is Zach's personal blog. If you're looking for his movies, please click here. Otherwise, have fun!

Friday, March 31, 2006


Thursday, March 30, 2006

Site Meter strikes again.

Ya know what I hate? People who search for my name (or a portion of it, anyway) but don't tell me why. Come on, tell us who you are! It's not like privacy actually exists in this world or anything.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

And another thing!

I got two compliments on Soap Opera today: one from a gentleman who had seen it in Cleveland and requested a DVD copy, and another from someone who saw it on the vodcast and said "Today at school I kept singing, 'Don Ivory, I have come to clean your bathroom!' " It's always nice to hear that sort of thing. And those compliments are for you too, Godfrey, as I'm sure you know.

Did I mention the freshly repainted schools?

Far too often, I blog only when things are going poorly, which leads those people who read my blog and care about me (all three of you) to conclude that my life is a cesspool of shame and depression, rife with missed interventions, pain, and self-pity. Well, believe it or not, even when this is the case, I do have some sense of perspective, and so I thought I'd share some good things that have happened, mostly unrelated to the things that I've complained about over the past few weeks.
  • My son, D, who is slightly autistic, is now learning and performing at his grade level for the first time ever, according to his teachers at a recent review of his IEP (individual education plan).
  • I was recently elected President of the board of directors for my daughter E's cooperative nursery school, for the 2006-2007 school year. (Of course, this is "good" news--note the scare quotes.)
  • I'm also substituting for the nursery school's administrator while she's out sick, so I'll actually earn a real, physical paycheck for the first time in many years.
  • I'm going to be a groomsman at a wedding in late April--one of my best friends from college is marrying a wonderful woman (also a good friend of ours, now) whom he met while at graduate school.
  • Two short films of mine, <ESC> and Soap Opera, were shown at the Cleveland International Film Festival two weekends ago.
  • Noises Off, despite all the, ahem, heartache, was a smashing success, and if you missed it, you should feel bad.
  • The vast majority of my family is not in prison.
  • I am, despite my best efforts to fuck things up, still married to a gorgeous Swede (excuse me, now I must take a cold shower).

Monday, March 27, 2006

Now what?

Sunday, March 26, 2006

It's over!!!!!

And now I can get on with my life, and hurt the people I love in my usual, subtle fashion, instead of the blatant crap I've been pulling lately.

Friday, March 24, 2006


I've decided I'm going to copy Medley and put up a list of "Books Read in 2006." (At least, I think I'm copying her. I mean, I'm sure she's not the first one who thought of it, though that's certainly possible; she's been on the web a long time.) I'm not sure how I'm going to do this, just yet, because I don't want to edit the darn template every time I read something. I'm thinking of tagging an Amazon (or other) link every time I finish a book, and using the tag feed; there must be a way to splice that into the sidebar, right? Suggestions welcome...

Anyway, at the moment it's going to be heavy on Kage Baker's Company novels, which if you haven't read, you really should.

Update: Well, that was easy. Now you can all be jealous of my lit'ry pretentions.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

"Why did you grow a beard?" -- They Might Be Giants

For once, I'm ahead of the trend. Of course, I've been telling everyone I'll shave once Noises Off closes, so...

Can YOU make your own decisions?

Heh. (Originally from here.)

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Fortran porn?

Input: Reason. Output: Pleasure.

Grated cheese.

Medley writes:
Apart from all that maturity above, though, you've reminded me why I'm glad my spouse doesn't have time to do any community theatre!
Besides making me LOL, that comment reminded me of a conversation long ago in college (with Mike, I think), when we were wondering whether acting was a particularly dangerous thing to do if one is susceptible to crushes. Or, since correlation does not equal causality, perhaps it's acting itself that causes dangerous crushes, hence all the crazy Hollywood marriages one hears about.

Certainly that's the case for me, and it's probably good that I wound up falling for a scientist instead of an actress/musician/etc. (though K is actually an excellent visual artist in her own right), because I doubt any of the crushes I've had would have worked out for more than, say, a month or so if that. And there have been a lot of them, though this one has been one of the worst (otherwise I wouldn't be so broken up about it), second only to one which nearly broke up our marriage (although in truth, there was a LOT more going on than that--this was just before I was diagnosed with clinical depression).

But to return to the topic at hand... is there something about acting that increases the intensity of infatuation? Or if not acting, performance in general? I mean, I get on stage not for the process, certainly not for the audition thrill (?!?!?), but for the applause. And if you have a cast to whom you're close, that applause tends to bind you together--at least for that moment--in a profound way. Does it create something else beyond just the closeness of a cast? I don't know, since I've never acted with anyone with whom there was a mutual attraction. (Not just because I've been with K for essentially all of my adult life; I'm sure my manifest unattractiveness has something to do with it.)

I don't know. My stepfather once joked that I turned 40 when I turned 14, and he might have been right; unfortunately, I managed to turn 14 when I turned 22, and that's pretty much where I've remained in the subsequent 12 years...

(No, the title has no relation to the post. Sue me.)

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


The good news is that the crush seems to be dissipating with time. The bad news is, I don't want it to.

At least I was honest with my wife (had been long before the previous blog entry, so it's not like she read it in the newspaper). Telling her helped with the guilt a lot. Of course, I dare not ask how much it hurt her. She says she's OK. Certainly, I was the one wailing and crying, not her, so...

In other news, I'm considering disabling anonymous comments. Come on, at least leave a pseudonym, people!

Spring in the air.

First day of spring, and it's snowing in Washington.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

I will conquer this.

And so it continues, every fucking day... the ache in my heart, the images in my head, the inability to see all the good I have going for me, simply because of one thing I cannot have...

It's a fucking mess, and I don't know what to do other than wait it out. And yet, to wait it out seems to be even more painful than anything else, because there is forever the "what might have been?"

My son and daughter smile and laugh, and my wife hugs me... I'm loved right here and now, and yet I want to be away, gone, somewhere, somewhen, and somewho else. All for... what? A fancy? A joke? A flick of hair?

Nothing will come of it; nothing can come of it, for should I try, I'll destroy everyone I hold dear; not to mention I will lose any semblence of respect for myself.

And yet, though next week should be a relief, because the temptation will be gone, I find myself dreading it, because the temptation will be gone. And at this one particular, infinitesimal slice of time, I can't live without it.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Extremism comes to Maryland.

My son's school bus driver is a surly old man who never even acknowledges anyone's existence, despite the numerous times I've said "good morning" to him. (And no, he isn't hard of hearing, because I have had a conversation with him, once.) This morning, he gave me another reason to dislike him: he was wearing a baseball cap emblazoned with "Minute Man Project."

For those who don't know the ins and outs of the Minutemen, who are a vigilante group dedicated to "protecting" the U.S. border with Mexico (and who may or may not be the reason the number of border crossing deaths spiked last year), I recommend perusing David Neiwert's blog.

What I find most interesting is the clear connection between the Minutemen and white power/white supremacist groups... and that D's bus driver is African-American.

Update: Right after I wrote this, I caught up with some leftover Washington Post vodcasts that I had downloaded a few weeks ago, including this one, an excellent overview of the new Minutemen chapter in Maryland, as well as the whole "day laborer" issue. Well worth a look.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Lo, the ache/Hath invaded mine guts.

After the third performance of Noises Off (a matinee on Sunday), I went home absolutely ravenous, but surprisingly awake, considering I had been up 'til past midnight every night this week, and running proverbial (possibly literal) miles in the course of playing the part.

K made a delicious dinner, and I took two or three bites, and my body said, "OK, we finally have sustenance. Time to shut down." I nearly fell asleep at the dinner table, and in fact did go to bed at 6:30.

By all rights, I should be relieved for the time off (we don't perform again 'til Friday), but the cast has become such a part of my life I find myself wishing I was still rehearsing. Yes, I'm lonely. Pathetic! And if I'm this lonely now, how will I feel after the show closes on the 25th?

Theater is so frappin' ephemeral. And it causes me so much pain after it ends! I need to grow up, damn it, and stop acting like a lovesick teenager.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Why, it almost sounds like 2002!

When I act in plays I don't get sleep; when I don't get sleep I get depressed; when I get depressed I get bitchy; when I get bitchy I take it out on my wife and kids. So every time I do a play, I take my life into my own hands.

So why do I do plays? Back when I was doing it for money, the answer was obvious: money. Of course, the enjoyment factor was far less than now, because now I'm acting, and when I was getting paid it tended to be backstage work. But really, are there any tangible benefits? Why do I do community theater?

I suppose one reason is that I'm pretty good at it. It's a lot of fun to be a big fish in a small pond. I'm not nearly good enough to make it as a paid actor (and most non-Equity theaters I could work at don't do plays I'm interested in anyway). But I can shine in the community theater scene.

Two is the people. This group I'm working with now seems to be a bunch of folks who know what they're doing and take it just seriously enough. In other words, they recognize that there is a whole world out there to which theatre is utterly irrelevant, and maybe that's the way it should be.

Three is the pressure, or lack thereof. One reason I couldn't hack it as a professional actor is that I utterly hate doing the cattle-call auditions where you have to prepare a two-minute monologue, etc.; but that's a major part of getting your foot in the paid door. But most community theaters do cold readings from the script, which I've always been pretty good at.

But is it worth it, for two or three weekends of glory that few people will see anyway? I don't know. I'll tell you in three weekends.

But there is one, awful awful aspect of every show I do, which continually threatens to ruin my life, or at the very least send me into a deep pool of high-school-esque angst. What is it? Well, unfortunately I can't talk about it, because this is a family blog (that is, a blog read by my family), and too much pain would result. So you'll just have to use your imagination.

All parts covered except one.

Today's Post on International Women's Day:
President Bush accused Iran, North Korea and Burma of suppressing women's rights, and said, "America will help women stand up for their freedom, no matter where they live."
So I guess we can expect a massive invasion of South Dakota sometime soon, George?