Saturday, April 9, 2011

Nailed it.

I got to work at the studio early. It was a half day for me-- lucky because I had an audition that afternoon, and I had to go to a tax prep office.

I filed my taxes in February. Please don't hate me. I used a free online tax program from H & R Block to do it. I figured out how much I had to pay in self-employment tax, sent it off, and rested easy. A couple weeks back, I got a letter from the IRS, saying I still owed them about $60 due to an error in my return. Not a savings-shattering amount, but enough to make me wonder how H&R Block's software had managed to make an error in my return. I called them, and they'd asked me to pay the $60, get a receipt from the IRS, and fax it with a copy of my return to a number in Omaha, with a 10 digit "resolution number" written on every page. I thought maybe I'd have better luck with a live human being.

So, after I got off work, I looked up the nearest H&R Block, went to their office, handed them the letter, and pulled up the return on their website. There was some confusion, they looked at my numbers, they said they hadn't messed up, so they called the IRS. We were on hold for a combined half an hour while the IRS figured out that they had in fact screwed up and I didn't owe them anything. I got out with about twenty minutes until my audition, feeling pretty good.

That is, until I realized that I was missing something: a headshot photo and resume, something any actor is supposed to have at every audition. I'd thought I'd have time between work and the audition to run home and print one out. I hadn't factored in the tax time.

I thought for a few minutes. I had my bag with an umbrella, the tax paperwork and letter, a copy of The Godfather (which I'm reading for the first time, never having seen the movies), and the USB cord to charge my phone. I was a few blocks from my office, and a few more from the audition.

I darted through the rain back to the office, said hi to my bemused coworkers, found a copy of my resume in my email, and printed it. I plugged my phone into the computer, found the email the printing company had sent me five months ago with my retouched headshots, and downloaded it onto my phone. Then I darted out of the office again.

Across the street was a Duane Reade drug store. I slipped inside, looked around and found a digital photo printing kiosk. I got my USB cord and plugged it in in the place of a USB thumb drive, hoping it would work. The machine would only print 4x6 prints. It would have to do. It took a long time to sort through every single photo on my phone, but after five minutes of tapping and loading, I got it printed. Though it looked awful. Once again, it would do.

After paying, I tried to get around the checkout line to the exit. Somehow, while smiling and saying 'excuse me', I gave some short, balding man the idea that I was trying to get to know him a little better, instead of trying to scoot around him and out the door. So he followed me trying his best to strike up a conversation. Either a very poorly dressed gay man looking for a date or a very eager tourist looking for conversation. I got out of that as politely as I could, getting on my phone in the process so that he only followed me for about half a block, before I went inside a cafe to talk somewhere warm and dry.

I was returning a call from my tutoring boss, updating her on the status of one of my students. I hung up, checked the address of the audition on Google maps, and spotted the entrance. Back into the rain, where I spotted, with seven minutes to go, a Staples Copy and Print Center two doors down from the audition.

I jumped inside, asked if I could get 8x10 prints, (the industry standard for headshots). He said they had 8.5x 11. I asked if they had glossy stock. They said yes. I got on a computer that charged by the minute, found the email again, printed the photo full size, paid, stapled it to the back of my resume, trimmed it down to 8x10, and ran into the building with auditions.

I had the address, but not the floor number, and the web page with the number wasn't loading onto my phone. I got off with several others at floor fourteen, wandered a bit till it loaded. I was two floors off. I went up the stairs, followed papers signs to the holding room and was in with about thirty seconds to spare.

They called me in to audition. I nailed it. They loved it. I got the callback email that evening.

I feel like I earned that one.

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations! You did deserve it! Kinda Raiders of The Lost Ark style. Nothing like good old adrenaline combined with smarts and creativity.