By Aislinn De'Ath

By Aislinn De'Ath
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Saturday, 26 March 2011

You too could save the life of a small donkey by giving us all your money...

Readers, I implore you, please be nice to the people who call you up to ask for charitable donations, because I am now one of them! 

Yes, I have joined the ranks of hundreds of other creative-types and started working in a call centre. I'm pretty lucky as it's a rather nice one, with regular breaks, people flicking through heat magazine and a posh organic/fair trade/eco-ponce cafe just next door. We even have windows. The people are nice and wear colourful clothes, they play games like 'pass the booze' and have big parties if they reach their target, and I'm working in aid of charity, specifically cancer research, which is something I am VERY passionate about, having lost a number of wonderful people to it. 

That's the nice bit.

The not so nice bit is that people don't like being called up and asked to give money. Even if they're only being called up because they sent a text saying the government isn't being nice enough to radiotherapy patients, they're not too keen on doing it themselves by sparing not very much at all a month. They do not answer politely, nor do they understand why you're asking them three times, each time with a different amount. They do not act in polite, friendly ways. Instead, I have had the following conversations today:

Woman: 'Look, I give money every year to charity so there's no way I'm giving you anything'
Me: 'Well that's so fantastic madam, it's really wonderful that you give so generously, but you see it's not really about the amount you give, it's more the regularity' tells her what the charity have been up to but is cut off by
Woman: 'No! I will not give any money! I am generous enough as it is, I can't believe that you are so dense!'
Me: (as part of the job we're supposed to ask 3 times for a monthly donation) I completely understand madam tells her some of the amazing things the charity has achieved recently and asks for a tiny, tiny amount. Not even 80p per week
dial tone....
Me: 'Uh...hello?' 

Me: Hello sir, I'm Ash calling from charity name just to say a big thank you for supplying your details for the charity campaign, may I just verify your details for the petition?
Man: Go away, I know what you want, I know your type, I won't give you a penny, so don't bother calling me again!
dial tone....
Me: 'Sigh'

Me: Hello, I....
Woman: YOU AGAIN!?!
Me: Uhm...sorry madam, I don't believe I've ever spoken to you?
Me: Oh, terribly sorry about that, I'll make sure...
dial tone...
Me: 'Bollocks'

So as you can see, it's not an easy job! Although there are some nice moments. When someone donates, you feel so proud, like you've really achieved something great for charity. And today I overshot my target and did the best in my group which was lovely! Also, if you get someone to donate, you get a round of applause, which makes you feel like a hero. Until the next person on the phone swears at you that is. I think maybe it's a form of Karma actually. I've spent years making up massive excuses and making lightsaber noises into phones to telephone workers, pretending it's static, maybe it's all those years catching up with me. I don't think I was ever that awful to charity workers though.....Karma is a bitch!

In other news, I had a complete baking disaster the other day. The Lad had managed to get himself a job, so I decided to make a lemon meringue pie to celebrate. Only problem was I got condensed and evaporated milk mixed up, resulting in a pie that was perfect meringue, lovely pastry but the most atrocious, bilious tasting lemony bit ever. It looked like bogeys. Some treat! Of course, once again, Karma came about as the Lad force fed me a slice, bleh....

Also, my film has had to be postponed for a couple of weeks as the DOP has got paid work, which, let's be honest, he could hardly turn down! I mean, I wouldn't. Man, I could use some moolah....I'd spend it on cake. NOM! Or pizza, I love pizza so very much. It's probably a good thing I can't afford any of those things, I'd be obese and would have to play comedy characters for the rest of my acting days. It's also probably a good thing that the shoot has been put off a bit, I need more time to come round to the idea of that sex scene! 

That's all for now chaps


Monday, 21 March 2011

On sex scenes...

Reader, my fortunes this week are somewhat mixed.

I just got my first official part since the screening, a very cleverly written short about an encounter between a man and a woman and the strange ties that link them (by which I don't mean men's suit sort of ties, I mean ties as in things that they have in common, but I was being fancy. You probably understood this but I thought I'd make sure that you didn't think we just both shopped in the boy's department at Next...). So that's awesome. It means another nice part to go on my showreel, huzzah! And working with people that left Drama Centre last year, double huzzah! And it's a lovely character, triple huzzah! Now comes the scary bit...

I have to do a sex scene.

Now, I understand that you might be going 'But you're an actress, surely you saw this coming?' Well, obvo. Also, anyone who went to uni with me knows of my somewhat  notorious part in the play 'The Censor' (there was sex, poo and boobs...need you know more?) And yes, I'm aware of all the technicalities like, it's a fully dressed scene. I won't be naked and nor will I have to see my co-actor's....erm....bits. But it's still fairly terrifying as things go. Here is a list of all the scary things about it.

a) I haven't kissed anyone apart from my boyfriend in a very long time. Three years to be exact. With the exception of two girls, both of whom were for acting based stuff. Kissing another boy is a scary thought and I'm not sure I'll cope particularly well, however, I shall have to get used to it, since this is a prospect that will most likely arise time and time again as an actress. In other words, grow some tupping balls Ash!!!

b) What if the boyfriend gets horribly jealous? I mean, he's not normally a jealous person, I'm the jealous one in our relationship. Not that I'm Fatal Attraction levels, but when to the extent that I struggle to stop giving girls I know he's had snogs with the evil eye. What if he develops an awful jealousy and won't go out with me any more? (n.b. this is unlikely as he is lovely and has many actor friends, so will hopefully understand that it's part of my job and not a sign of me being a hussy but the fear is still there).

c)  What if I've forgotten how stage kiss? Which leads to the thought, what if I look awful when I'm kissing, like a trout having a seizure or something? I mean, at least on stage I never had to see myself kissing so I wouldn't know, but film is sort of permanent. A video might get put on youtube of my terrible kissing and I'll be barred from auditioning from films with romance for the rest of my days!

d) Although the scene is fully clothed, you'll see flashes of thigh etc...what if my thighs are so unnaturally cellulitey that I have to be cut from the film?

e) I am massively immature. I might start giggling and not be able to stop.

In other words, AAAARGRGRGHHHH!

The worst part is that my boyfriend is currently off doing training in Basingstoke so he can't comfort and calm me. And he's there for the whole week, so he'll miss my first day of shooting! Bum water. Anyone got any words of wisdom?

We'll, I'm off to practice my orgasm face in the mirror.
Bye lovelies!

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Miss. Motivator and the psychic lady

Oh dear Reader, a dreadful thing has occurred. It is 11.20 and I am in bed, looking at websites that have funny pictures and video game references. I don't even play video games. I have an essay still to write and a series of cover letters to compile yet still I lounge around in bed like a slightly turgid turnip. Earlier the bell rang and I grudgingly had to go open it in my dressing gown. The postman looked at me with a disapproving frown as if to say 'Young lady, it is 10am on a wednesday, why are you not dressed and actively seeking work?' I felt pretty ashamed, but not ashamed enough to go do a work out and look up call centres that might like to hire me. Instead, I got back into bed and read a copy of 'Bella' that my mum had left outside my door for me. Reader, I am scared I am becoming that awful cliche', the layabout student.

Funnily enough, just writing this is making me want to get up and do things. Eat breakfast for example. And then go sit in my Dad's office and start brain storming cover letters. It still doesn't make me want to do a work out though, but then again few things do.

I'm not too worried though Reader, as last night I visited a Psychic (using the last of my birthday money, the rest is going on recording my voice reel). And I have to say, it was an altogether positive experience! I left feeling quite smug, perhaps she sensed that I'd believe anything she said so long as it was that I'd do well. But still, apparently the next three months are going to bring great things in terms of work, so I'll keep you updated. She also said I'd be getting loads of money, and moving house within the year. Woo hoo! I was just dreaming the other day about winning the lottery, so that would be nice. Bit of cash to give back to the parents after all their support and I could even pay for my brother's uni fees so he wouldn't have to get himself ridiculously into debt.

The thing is Reader, although I sneer a bit at it, I do actually have quite a bit of faith in that lady's predictions because she got some other bits and bobs (which I won't tell you due to them being juicy family secrets etc) really really right. In a vaguely scary way. And apparently my great grandparents are looking out for me, which is lovely, especially as one of them I never got to meet when she was alive. Just had a terrible thought, what if they've seen the morning routine of dancing in my pants? Oh dear... sorry great-grandparent-ghosties...

Right, I am starving now and I want to get the ball rolling with my exotic and wealthy future, so I shall sign off and get working!

Bye chaps and chapattis!