I was fresh out of school when I got a phone call from an unknown number. A small group of theater makers who called themselves Corpus Ca were in the process of creating a new act and needed someone to develop light and sound along with it. Their technician at the time was about to start a full-time day job so he couldn’t make it.
And so, I went to pay them a visit while they were still in the painstaking process of doing research and doing countless hours of improv to see what worked- nervous as fuck and not too convinced I’d make a good enough impression to actually get the job.
But I did.
I can’t remember what it’s called but there’s this table of character traits that categorize people based on 5-ish questions, and labels you with a combination of latters depending if you’re artistic or not, extroverted or introverted, emotional or logical thinker, and so on. I remember doing one of those tests and they would suggest jobs for me based on the results. I found it very interesting, until their little computer suggested I’d become a concierge in a church- I kid you not. This was the only suggestion, no alternatives.
I joined the army 2 months later.
Still, when you look, you can see those corner stones in people, those character traits. Obviously they’re not black and white like the test would have you believe, and it’s absurd to think it’s where a personality ends, but it’s interesting to apply those simple questions to the people you know. It makes it easier to define certain traits and think further on them.
And recently, I have come to the conclusion that in general, I’m not a big fan of emotional thinkers.
I’m not sure why I was invited, I consider myself the least creative of all the creative people I know.
I’ve done some paint can stuff and take photos, but looking back, I think I was trying harder to be the kind of person who does this kind of thing, than finding any satisfaction in doing so. I work with borrowed ideas and existing work, not at all creative in the “creation” sense.
I find it a shame too, I am insanely jealous of those who are. Even the worst art (courtesy of Tracey Emin) impresses me because it went through a process of any number of steps, several of which I can only imitate… poorly. It made a shift, inside the artist’s mind, from one medium to the next, without losing power.
In my most arrogant moments, I have compared the stage business to spending time in the army. I’ve done both so I know to an extent what I’m talking about, but it’s also why I never voice the idea out loud- I feel like it would be extremely disrespectful to the people in uniform.
The reason why I’ve thought this is because both situations come down to a combination of individual effort and teamwork to finish a job safely. Each individual has a great responsibility, and at the same time we watch each other’s backs constantly. When we’re going up, about half of our communication consists of redundant warnings “just to be safe”. The slightest mistake, a slip of the mind, can have huge consequences.
Another facet both jobs share is a special relationship with fear. At least, on my end- I don’t think many of my colleagues are bothered by it.
You see, I am afraid of heights. It gets better by the end of the summer usually, after lots of shock therapy, but every year I have to start the process again, where I feel the paralysis in my arms setting in a tiny bit higher than the day before.