I came to Los Angeles with a dream. I went to school to study theatre and film with a dream. I worked at Barney Greengrass with a dream backing up my every move. With the amount of industry heavies who came in and dined on a regular basis, there was a hope I held onto that somehow someone would help me get closer to my dream. Now, this doesn't mean I was sitting around waiting to be discovered. I would regularly go out on auditions. I would do plays in and around LA. I worked on short films. I took classes. I wrote my own plays. I am producing my own webseries. I submit myself daily to projects and casting directors and agents. I did what a struggling actor/writer in Hollywood is supposed to do, try and sell myself. It was my hope that if or when one of the producers, or directors, or casting directors, or managers, or agents who ate at Barney Greengrass saw me in something they would think, for five seconds, "I know this guy. Where do I know him from?" That five seconds could be all that I needed to help me stand out above the other guy. That was what I WANTED to happen from me working at Barney Greengrass.
What I got instead are thousands of supporters wishing me well and getting my back and a bunch of other people scoffing at how stupid I was to write anything about my work or my customers in the first place. I want to respond to both sides. To those of you who are sharing your feelings of injustice for me, thank you so much! All the messages and retweets make me feel like I did the right thing and make my consequences a little easier to deal with. To the other side, I have to admit that what I did might not have had my own best interest at hand. I did not think anyone, other than the 22 people following me, would read what I tweeted. That was my ignorance to the power of social media. I understand the concerns my management and Barney's corporate had with clientele wanting to shop and eat with discretion. I don't know if being fired was what I deserved, but it happened. I tweeted, I lost my job, I lost my health insurance and I accept that as the consequences to my actions.
This is what my five years at Barney Greengrass has brought me and I honestly wouldn't change it. I have no money, I have to move out of my house and my family and I have to stay at a friends house until I can get back on my feet or until Mimi's ice cream shop opens, I am behind on bills, every restaurant I apply to isn't hiring, but I wouldn't change that. Thousands of people are reading what I write. Any struggling writer would kill for that publicity. In a way I may be killing Jane Adams' reputation, or maybe more people know who she is than ever before. You're welcome Jane.
I have no idea what happens next. I can't even imagine, which is so strange because my entire life has been spent imagining what my entire life would be like and now every day is a new surprise. Not good, not bad, just something new.
For those interested.
I started writing a book four years ago as a way to create my imagined life and prevent catastrophe from happening. The book is about an actor on the verge of success (my imagined life) enjoying the benefits that come with success. He finds out that an ex lover has a five year old child that is his. (I was hoping that writing about it might prevent it. Turns out two years after starting this book Mimi and I had an unexpected pregnancy.) I am going to share a little bit of it. Justin, the main character, just finished a film "Silent Woods" that has the potential to win him acclaim and possible awards. I thought this segment would be appropriate due to Justin's philosophy on tipping.
!Warning! Adult content!
'Marissa is a 19-year-old pop star whose existence is based entirely on the success of her sister. She is marginally talented and completely unoriginal. Her two assets are the size C’s on her tiny-framed body. And for me, her insecurities of not living up to her sister gives me ample opportunity to take advantage of her without emotional remorse. After Clarisse and I broke up, Marissa started sending me letters telling me how lucky I was to get away from her psycho sister. To be honest both of the Donnell sisters are a little off. I think it might be a dirty daddy or dirty uncle complex. She would send me tickets to her shows and invite me to the MTV awards. She was seventeen, and while the image of penetrating that illegal twat tempted the hell out of me and kept me up late at night with visions of her tits in my face, I had to think about my career. If it ever got out that I was fucking a minor even if she was a superstar, it would destroy me. I did not want to be an R Kelley or Rob Lowe. It was actually Tegan who facilitated her and I coming together.
During the gestation period of Silent Woods, he would invite me up to his house off Coldwater Canyon to smoke some herb and talk about the film. We would mostly talk about music and who our dream-leading lady would be and how we would take turns dating her. On one occasion Tegan’s girlfriend Allison, daughter of one of the most influential directors of all time, was swimming in his pool with her friend Marissa. We went outside to smoke and as soon as we got to the pool I was blinded by the sun gleaming off a wet pair of amazing breasts it took me two minutes of staring at before I realized whom they belonged to. Marissa looked up shaded her eyes and screamed “Justin!!” She jumped out of the pool and pressed her wet little body against mine. The four of us spent the day swimming and smoking and I eventually found myself in Tegan’s pool house fucking little Marissa Donnell from behind without hesitation.
“I knew you were going to be there that day. Allison told me Tegan was meeting with you and she invited me over.” I hate the way she acts like she knows everything and always gets what she wants. Her smug little attitude confounds me. I don’t know whether to fuck her or punch her in the face. I’ll probably end up fucking her. I am not that violent of a person. She takes bite of my steak asserting her control over me. Trying to appear aloof, I drink my wine and stare around the restaurant. It’s a hapless venture. Every time Marissa and I meet in New York, we always eat at the same steak house and sit in the same dark secluded booth to keep our relations to ourselves. The only ones that interact with us are the maitre d' and our server who has been working here for the past 15 years taking care of some of the highest profile celebrity and political figures of the time. I am not trying to say that I include myself in this group even though the media would love to know who’s foot is creeping up my leg right now. I am fortunate enough to have met the owner of the restaurant at a party almost a year ago in the Hampton’s.
Marissa drones on about some designer offering to design something for a video or something. I am not quite sure what she is saying. Her voice turns into this dull hum interrupted by her annoying giggle. Is she on her phone or is she talking to me? I haven’t responded in at least twenty minutes. I drift away to this silent corner of my mind. The emptiness consumes me and I feel alone, isolated in this existence. The reality of who I am, what I am doing and whom I am with are just an illusion. They are a piece of a dream I held onto years ago. None of this seems right. Something is missing and I can’t figure out what it is. Everything I have ever wanted is here, right in front of me waiting for me to grab it. Success, money, fame, respect, I have it. I am the master of my world and the course of my existence, yet I am still alone.
Marissa’s foot presses against my dick snapping me out of my contemplation. Looking at her big brown eyes staring back at me as she sips on her Belvedere and cran and feeling the pressure of her foot longingly caress my crotch brings a smile to my face. This is my life. People would die to be where I am. Sometimes we need to control our sub-conscious before it takes control of us. I finish my wine and lean over the table and take her head in my hands and kiss her firmly. “I can taste the wine.” She giggles. I lean to her ear and whisper, “Let’s get the fuck out of here.” I lay down three one hundred dollar bills. I don’t even know how much the check was, but I assume it was less then that. They usually end up at about $150-$200, the rest goes to our gracious hosts. It’s strange how in my life hundreds are the new twenties. I always throw down $300 if I am eating with someone else. Add another $150 for every person at the table.
Only once have I miscalculated. I had dinner with Adam Sandler to discuss a project he was producing. We were going to play brothers from a dysfunctional home who reunite at their father’s funeral only to find out their father’s final wish was for them to follow this crazy treasure map he drew up years ago, filled with clues leading them to his hidden fortune only to find out his fortune was the two of them. Kind of a cheesy family pic with some funny bits of us on the treasure hunt. We bought a couple bottles of wine, dinner, I threw down $300 and we left. The waiter ran out after us. He was embarrassed to tell us that the bill was $325. I gave him two bills and apologized. Adam said something funny and gave him another two bills. The picture didn’t go through. Adam booked the new super hero trilogy, and I got “Silent Woods.”'