Monday, August 11, 2014


I just did the most fantastic workout and I'm REALLY BUZZED! It was an open class that was serving as an audition for CardioTap teachers. I would love to get paid to do that class but if that doesn't happen I will still poster them, offer to assist in exchange for class, everything. A wonderful, high-cardio workout to golden oldies (Great Balls of Fire, Rock Around the Clock) that makes you SWEAT but because it's tapping tapping tapping my spirits were through the roof from start to finish and took my energy levels with them. Can't sing enough praises. The teachers were fun, laid-back and bringing their own energy and the company co-owner is my new favourite person, she made the whole thing feel like instead of trying out for a job we were joining an ensemble. My endorphins are going bananas right now.

Saturday, August 9, 2014


Although infrequent, my blog posts of late have been consistent in their content - mostly chronicling the happenings of my life, a pretty solid journal. Today I feel like sharing some alternative things.

I'm a big fan of YouTube star Jenna Marbles (yes yes I know my generation. YouTube stars, what is this world that we live in) who basically makes short videos detailing not just the ins and outs of her life but things like 'what I learned from video games' and 'how to trick people into thinking you're good looking' PS she is a comedienne these are all for entertainment and not to be taken too seriously
So I'm partially inspired by the variety of content she puts up and also her bold frankness. Here goes...

Sometimes when I've eaten and there are meal remnants on my plate/in the takeaway container and I'm tired and don't feel like doing dishes, I will just cover it and put it in the fridge and deal with it in the morning.

When I babysit, the kids sometimes watch a show called Kickin' It on the Disney Channel about a group of incredibly well-dressed kids who do karate. When I babysit them at night after they've gone to bed I usually put the TV on. And last time I did, I watched multiple episodes of Kickin' It. Alone. The kids had gone to bed.

Rather than buy makeup for when I have to doll up for auditions, I will just go early to Sephora the huge cosmetics shop and put on a full face using free samples.

I'm weirdly obsessed with collecting glass jars. I never throw them out, instead I wash them and put them in a cupboard. And eventually I put things in them that don't need to be put in glass jars at all I just really want to use my glass jars.

Never have I, do I or will I want anything to do with Star Wars.

Offensive heckling from men in the street is a hot topic for women all over social media at the moment with articles and opinion pieces about how many times women are faced with objectification per day. The guys who hang out on my street all the time say 'I like your sunglasses' 'need help with those bags?' or 'have a nice evening' and it gives me weird survivor's guilt.

This one is known by some but not all: Two years ago I stole a miniature milk jug from Alice's Tea Cup, a cafe on the Upper West Side, because it's pretty. It now sits on my kitchen counter with a prop flower in it. For this I am sorry.

Those are all I can think of right now, but it's kind of fun to come up with them so maybe more to come. Now to balance things and in the spirit of self-improvement, some things that I used to be terrible at but am now ok at:

Asking customer service people for assistance: whether it's calling a helpline, asking a shop assistant where something is or having waiters correct mistakes to my order, I am far better these days at responding 'yes' to the question 'can I help you?' instead of going 'no I'm fine thanks and instantly regretting it but being too scared to ask them to come back.

Waking up in the morning, stay with me on this one: I still consider myself pretty night owlish but that doesn't mean when I have to I can't be up and out the door in half an hour. As opposed to needing an hour just to wake up and another to get ready.

Putting on my shoes without screwing them up, by which I mean untying the laces instead of just jamming my foot in and squashing the backs of the shoes down. Still working on this but vastly improved.

Doing my hair - yes this is the light fare of my improvements but it's important to me because I really never used to be able to do hair very well despite always wanting and finally having and loving long hair. Over the years I've gradually improved and now I actually give myself a hairstyle sometimes rather than just putting it in a ponytail or leaving it to do whatever it wants. No it's not rocket science but it's something I can do now that I couldn't do before, ok!

And finally a double-sided confession/point of pride: I am terrible at painting my own nails - left hand goes ok, right hand no because I'm not ambidextrous enough and even if I have managed to make an ok job of it I always without fail manage to smudge it before it's dry even if I sit perfectly still for 20 minutes post-paint. I am very envious of my friends who do it in five minutes flat and always have great looking nails and wonder how they do it. Once a while I think, 'why don't I have this fundamental girl skill, where was I when they handed out nail painting talent' and more than once its been a source of humour for my gal pals.
Flip side: the man in the newsagents that I used to stop by every day with my young charges after school was very friendly and gave me free gum and sometimes a magazine and always liked to ask how I was. He shook my hand once and remarked on what a big strong hand I had, to which I laughingly replied 'you know, farmer's daughter'. One day when I went there with the kids including the baby this man bent down to the baby and said 'you know who that is don't you? That is the farmer's daughter, the warrior woman'. Which is possibly the greatest compliment I've ever received, and all based on a handshake (unless he's seen me fighting Gladiators in the Circus Maximus and I never spotted him in the crowd) So, since then I've not once worried about my complete inability to handle a small pot of nail varnish without making a mess because who needs pretty nails when apparently your hands can make an impression in their normal state?
Nice to remind yourself sometimes of those little unexpected things.

For the record, my week off began yesterday Wahoo!

Yesterday we also wished a Happy 22nd Birthday to the bonniest of lasses Miss Lauren Downie, celebrated with cocktails laughs and dancing on Bleecker Street.

Jacob and I have the apartment to ourselves for a short while due to people being off and away places which is rather luxurious.

And final confession, today I got out of bed at 1pm. Just because I could. And nobody needed me to be anywhere. I made up for it by doing a LOT of cleaning and household improvements for the next four hours though.

Tessa out, peace love safety and congratulations to everyone who needs any combination thereof

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Life is a carnival

Stuff what I done:

1) Vegan pop-up market which happens once a month at a venue in, where else, Brooklyn. I've been twice before and its a definite favourite because I can go for broke with indulgences without being a big cheat! I'm talking loaded hot dogs, brownies, I had a freakin Maker's Mark vanilla doughnut, macaroons, empanadas, they come up with everything. And I eat it all.

...later that day...

Dinosaur Jr!
South Street Seaport has a free musical festival once a year and headlining this year was Dinosaur Jr. I loved seeing them they were so laid back and gave zero Fs about anything and sounded the way some bands just should sound live, tight and strong but rough around the edges. A drunk crowd member decided to stick it to the man by ambushing the gazebo that was sheltering the sound guys and shaking its supporting poles whilst yelling 'f*** this tent!' so that was super duper rock n roll... yeah.

...later later that day...

Checked out a bar I've been meaning to go to for the longest time because it has a rooftop terrace. Verdict: two very enthusiastic thumbs up. Then to The Ritz (misleading, not a hotel, a bar in He.o's Kitchen) to join my friends, Michel has recently got into the drag scene and it's  going well for him. The Ritz is definitely a homebase for drag performers starting out in the city so he was doing some mingling and getting himself out there.

2) American Hustle at Riverside Park. I love outdoor films especially ones that have sunset over the Hudson as a backdrop.

3) Mister Sunday

At which we drink sangria, we eat tostada and pizza, we sit in the sunshine enjoying being in our twenties and we dance dance dance! And get very hot and sweaty. SO WORTH IT.

4) My visitor! Ellie is here, she came last weekend and left after a couple of days to go and do the work part of her trip and now she's back to do the tourist part. She has a New York pass so she has access to all the big attractions and destinations, and has already got a fair few under her belt.  Last night we helped out at a Yael Tap show serving drinks, not the most exciting way for a New York visitor to spend her evening but nice to spend time with her in a 'this is normal life just I live in New York now' kind of way.

5) This

Clap Along

I have made some major oversights in my summer updates... maybe because I've been LIVING LIFE LIKE A BOSS aka making good use of the opportunities afforded me by the New York City summer.

This is a great city during the months of clement weather - outdoor concerts and plays, free events, food festivals, dance parties... and I've been to a bunch of 'em! I have also been babysitting a lot, summer also equals kids who need stuff to do all day. A major oversight was detailing my first ever overnight babysit which was on the Fourth of July which was a while ago now! I took care of Amosi Pres. The Pres family are the good friends of the Evens, my usual family and the parents went away for a night for the mum's Birthday so I stayed over. It was good fun because they were quite happy for me to treat it as a special day for Amos, no parents n all. So I went for broke, we ate chocolate, we bought balloons, Yahli came over for a sleepover and we stayed up late to watch the Fourth of July fireworks on TV, the next day they built a huge fort den in the parents bedroom, I ordered pancakes AND HAD THEM DELIVERED, that's right... it was pretty rad. And when Noga and Zwika got back they invited me to stay and watch the World Cup Game that was on at the time which was very sweet because I really didn't want to miss it.

So that happened... and then I had a bunch of fun. Here's the thing: audition time is a little dead at the moment as often happens in the summer. Summer summer summer, let's count how many times I've written summer so far.
Audition time a little dead, lucky me I'm attached to this great choreographer Ms Katie Pettit who assistant directed Supersoldier last year and tapped with me in it.  I did this workshop with her for a new musical by Jay Zimmerman,  a deaf composer who made a musical called Roboticus inspired by his decision to refuse a cochlear implant so he wrote a musical about a guy who has the chance to make technological improvements to himself and the implications of I went to be a robot for Katie which was fun. And last week (this is not a chronological blog) I did a performance again related to a new musical, this time based on Orpheus and Eurydice, which had five choreographers working with the same music. The idea was to a) see what happened when you do that and b) let the composer see his piece 'on it's feet' for the first time ever. I loved working on the piece that we did, Katie is very much my kind of choreographers, she doesn't use 'tricks' or rely on crazy extensions, or just link leaps to turns and call it choreography. She uses expressive pedestrian movements combined with more 'dancey' fluid motions and mixes 'ugly' with 'pretty' - all original and all in the name of having something to say and a story to tell, not in the name of showing off impressive but irrelevant skills. Love it! Because of her mad skills the composer loved her work and I'm positive is going to ask her to work more with him on the rest of the show, and since I'm a committed disciple I hope I'mwill too. We've also recently heard about next steps for Roboticus which is very exciting and I look forward to also hanging with Jay again, not only a great composer but a wonderful person.

That was basically an entire paragraph of disclaimer, to ensure everyone that I am doing productive and useful things not just having a blast with SUMMER fun
Now that it's out of the way I can talk about the great stuff I've enjoyed lately! Um...I have overwhelmed myself with the amount of typing...I will have to do this in more bitesize chunks.
Also to celebrate my one day off this week I'm pretty much just chilling at home doing domestic stuff. And relaxing. Part of which involved a shower beer. That's drinking a beer in the shower. I got given a case of beer ok, no judgments.

I'll be back! Xxxxxxxxx