“When something is festering in your memory or your imagination, laws of silence don’t work, it’s just like shutting a door and locking it on a house on fire in hope of forgetting that the house is burning. But not facing a fire doesn’t put it out.”
My great aunt was an Oscar-nominated actress and a friend of Tennessee Williams. The advice she gave me about acting when I was twenty-one years old was one of the main reasons I decided to follow the dream that would eventually lead me here to this mountain I love so much.
She told me, "Go live your dreams and when you're ready, bring what you've learned to your acting. Acting will always be there, but it won't give you a life. Bring yours to it." Some of the best advice I've ever been given.
So I started on a long adventure that brought me to this mountain I love. This place feels like a part of me, and summers here especially have been some of the best times of my life for over twenty years.
These past few summers, the gentle breezes and long, warm days have started to be replaced by scorching heat that's 10 to 20 degrees above what it was just a decade ago. From July through September, the skies are now full of smoke for weeks at a time.
Last year, the biggest fire in California history came within six miles of burning to the ground this place I love so dearly. We packed up the cats and dog and had to evacuate for almost two weeks.
a smoky sunrise through the oaks
It's all left me thinking that I need to do what Maggie suggests in "Cat On A Hot Tin Roof" and face this fire; It's looking like I may not be able to spend the rest of my days here as I had hoped.
This week, I've been sitting with this realization and started the process of looking for another safer place for us to live. While I'm hopeful I can find a way to do this without leaving the mountain permanently, it's all felt a bit overwhelming and sad.
But today, while I was writing a thank you note to a listener who'd joined the Patreon, I was overcome by the deep gratitude I feel for all of you who listen to the podcast. Making Listen To Sleep is the one thing I can count on to rouse me out a funk or a bad day, and I get to do that because of wonderful folks like you.
My aunt was so right. Listen To Sleep is the best thing I've ever done as an actor, and it's a direct result of the advice she gave me over 30 years ago. My whole life experience is poured into this show, and you all give me so much in return. Nothing I've done has ever been more personally or artistically satisfying.