The Doctor is in . . . ? (nerd alert)

August 27, 2014 § Leave a comment

Although I am loathe to admit it, since Sunday I’ve been embroiled in a bit of an internal struggle: I can’t decide how I feel about the new Doctor Who.

I am kind of a Whovian-come-lately having only started watching the show when it was rebooted in 2005.  I’d heard about Doctor Who, of course, and around the time a TV marathon caught my attention I was also systematically devouring The Prisoner and was curious about this other British TV classic.  Anyway, with the help of my DVR, I ended up working my way through most of the episodes I’d missed and by the end of David Tennant’s Doctor and for all of Matt Smith’s I’ve been paying pretty close attention.  I’m a fan.

I’m not great with change.  When Christopher Eccleston was about to end his run as the Doctor, I thought for sure I’d be woefully disappointed in the next one.  But that was David Tennant!  And then when he was stepping down, I practically mourned . . . but then we had Matt Smith!!  All of them were so charismatic in the role that watching the show could feel a bit flirty (what self-respecting Smart Girl wasn’t a little jealous of Amy Pond for reasons that had nothing to do with time travel?)  So when The Husband and I settled in on the couch to watch the season premiere of Doctor Who, “Deep Breath,” on Sunday night (we watched on demand), I was ready to be won over again, this time by Peter Capaldi.  Instead, I was a bit unsettled not to be more charmed by the new Doctor.

I felt guilty about my response and, upon further reflection, there are two reasons for this:

  1. Peter Capaldi did a great acting job and was not just believable but memorable as the Doctor as he was written in “Deep Breath.”  (As a fellow actor, in retrospect, it felt crummy not to be cheering him on in his new role.)
  2. What do I REALLY love about Doctor Who?  Steven Moffat!  I love his Sherlock.  I loved his Jekyll.  Even Coupling is delightful.  And it was about three-quarters of the way through “Deep Breath” when Peter Capaldi had a distinctly Jeff-from-Coupling-esque monologue that I realized where my true affections lie.

Steven Moffat tells stories that I love to hear, in ways that I love to hear them and, whether I find him fanciable or not, Peter Capaldi seems up to the task of helping realize those stories.  I’m excited to see how this new Doctor fits into his vision (and disinclined to think I know better).

Do you watch Doctor Who?  What do you think of the new Doctor?!

 

I’m Coming Out!

August 21, 2014 § Leave a comment

Ya know.  Like the Diana Ross song:

(I won’t be wearing that outfit though . . .)

I LOT has happened in the last three years: I moved, had a baby, lost my mom.  I’ve kept as busy as I could with acting and writing: there were plays, short films, an audio-book, and there’s a forthcoming webseries (more on that in the coming weeks).  Suffice it to say: I’ve really been in the thick of life.  But, except for here and there in this blog, I’ve kept most of what I’ve been up to to myself.  It feels like it’s time to reconnect with the world – with you! And so I’m coming out!

To begin, I’ve launched a brand new website!  I’m so excited to have a site that, I think, feels like me.  I’m even more excited that it will function both as a place for news about my career AND as a hub for all of the content I’ve been creating.  You know about this blog but did you now that I tweet?  Do you know that I post a Theme Song of the Week on a separate blog?  Would you like to see what I’m instagraming? How about my posts on Medium?  It’s all collected on one page – your own personal Eevin-zine.

I’m also going to be reaching out with weekly e-mails.  They’ll let you know what’s newsworthy in my professional (and maybe sometimes my personal) life but they’ll also include great content I’ve curated from my amazingly talented friends and the internet-at-large.  You can opt in by clicking the button at the bottom of any page of the new website!

What I really hope is to be able to communicate and collaborate with you – to help make what I’m writing and creating more meaningful to you and to myself.  So I invite you to subscribe to my updates, bookmark the blogs page of my website, follow me on the social media platform of your choice – whatever suits you best – and then to be in touch with your thoughts along the way.

I appreciate you deeply just for being here reading these words right now.  I’m so excited to share this next leg of my journey with you.

xo

You MUST listen to this.

August 15, 2014 § Leave a comment

I was in the car this morning when StoryCorps came on.  It’s on every Friday morning on WNYC and it just about always makes me cry.  Today was no exception.

First, if you don’t know about StoryCorps and the amazing work they do, check it out HERE.

Here’s StoryCorps’ synopsis of today’s piece:

In 2009, Alex Landau was a student at Community College of Denver. After a traffic stop one night, he was severely beaten by Denver Police officers.

Alex is African-American. He was adopted by a white couple and he grew up in largely white, middle-class suburbs of Denver.

Alex and his mother, Patsy Hathaway, came to StoryCorps to talk about how Alex’s race has influenced his life and what happened that night when police pulled him over.

You can listen to the piece and/or read a near-transcript of the story by clicking HERE.

Don’t get me wrong.  This isn’t a new story.  I’ve heard versions of this story plenty of times – both in the media and anecdotally – so, unfortunately, this isn’t a case of feeling surprised or like the scales have fallen from my eyes.  This is bad news and it’s even worse because its old news.

(It’s also far too much to unpack in one blog post but I do want to make two points:)

The aspect of this particular telling of the story that really grabbed me is what Alex says at the end: “for me, it was the point of awakening to how the rest of the world is going to look at you. I was just another black face in the streets.”  Of course that’s how he felt.  And it rang true because I can think of countless times that I was walking around as a white person looking at black people who were looking back at me thinking that that was my attitude towards them.  I can’t blame them.  Of course it isn’t only black people.  Women experience this.  Other races and ethnicities do.  Plenty of people.  It’s a tragedy in every case: people learning to keep their guard up because people outside their immediate experience can’t be trusted to see them clearly or even to see them as individuals.

I also remembered, during “Cultural Diversity” week in high school (which was pretty awesome, by the way), my friend and some other black students on a panel talking about the unpleasant, burdensome feeling of always being the ones who have to educate others about black history, culture, the black experience in America.  They wished the people who wanted to know would show some initiative to find out on their own instead of passively waiting to be told what and when they needed to know.  I’m asking you to listen to this because I think it’s an easy opportunity to extend yourself and learn a little more about an experience and a point of view that may be outside of your own.  This story is told in our country over and over again and maybe if we all hear it enough we’ll start to figure out how to do better for each other and ourselves.

When you listen to the piece, what do you find most moving or surprising? What will you remember about this version of this story?  Tell us in the comments.

Mothering, Acting & Running, Elsewhere!

August 14, 2014 § Leave a comment

It’s been a fun week for me on the internet!

Kate O’Phalen, who is an actress and blogger, asked me to contribute to a post she was writing about being an Actor and a Mother.  Her questions for all us ActorMoms were really fun to answer and I love reading how everyone’s responses compared.  The post is up at GreenRoomBlog.com.

Also, the delightful Jess Barron gave me a shout-out in her recent article for Livestrong.com about running.  She and I were both inspired by the recent NY Times article and – Bonus! – Jess includes a bunch of great running playlist suggestions in her post, so you should for sure check it out! (If you missed it, here’s my post on the topic.)

What’s something great that you read this week?  Spread the love by letting us know in the comments!

 

Apple! Are you listening?!

August 7, 2014 § Leave a comment

There is no way to change the “snooze” duration on an iPhone!

Seriously!

My iPhone can shoot and edit video! It knows where I am! It can listen to and (sometimes) understand me and then respond (somewhat) logically!

But there’s no way to lengthen or shorten that snooze.  (Ok Ok. There’s an app for that.  But c’mon! An app for that?! So inelegant.)

I am incredulous.  And a teeny bit forlorn.

Apple!  Are you out there?! Hook a girl up!!

Mindy Kayling, The New York Times . . . and ME! (a Venn Diagram!!!)

August 1, 2014 § 1 Comment

Q: What is the overlap in a Venn Diagram that includes Mindy Kayling, The New York Times and Eevin Hartsough?

A: This week, at least, it’s running! (See? I drew it for you!)

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Here’s the story:
A little over a month ago, I was at my wit’s end fitness-wise. I hadn’t been able to find time to exercise regularly since shortly before my son was born two years ago; I’d had a little baby and then a sick mom to take care of. But I was also feeling more and more icky in my skin, not to mention that, without exercise, maintaining my weight was feeling extra hard.

Just before my mom got sick back in May 2013, I’d done some training with a running coach (I’d won some sessions at the Neo-Futurists’ benefit auction) so, even though I’m a life-long terrible runner, I knew I could do it.

And then I started thinking about Mindy Kayling who has been pretty public about being a slow runner. The more I tried to figure out when and how I could fit some exercise into my life, the more Mindy’s slow running came to mind.

So I started running on weekday mornings. I only run for about half an hour (more on this below) so the time commitment is low and I can get it done before I walk the dogs and take over parenting duties from my husband (who usually gets our boy in the mornings). I’ve been so pleased with how I’ve felt – even though I don’t run much and I certainly don’t run fast. Still, I wondered how much good my little runs could be doing me. BUT THEN . . .

The New York Times published an article that says that running even just five or ten minutes a day can have HUGE positive impacts on your health. What?! I’m pretty psyched.

Here are my tips for running success (especially if you, like me, are not a natural runner):

  • Listen to awesome music. Whatever’s awesome to you. But take note: music you like for exercise may be completely different from the music you like during the rest of your life. I started with Girl Talk’s All Day which seems pretty no-fail to me but enjoy finding your thing.
  • Use an interval timer. I don’t run half an hour straight. I run four six or seven minute intervals (depending on the day – I’m trying to work my way up) with one minute of walking in between. It amounts to 24-28 minutes but I don’t run out of steam because the short walks let me recover enough to keep going. I have a free app called Simple Interval Timer that I run on my phone (which, conveniently, also plays my music).
  • Distract your brain. Mindy does this too! She likes to imagine dramatic situations that compel her to run. I like to think about different writing projects – I fantasize and brainstorm – and I have a lot of imaginary run-ins with people (celebrities and not) who I’d LIKE to talk to but don’t have the opportunity. Once I’m not focused on the run itself, it’s easy to keep going.
  • Have a helpful mantra or attitude. Mine is: “It doesn’t have to feel good, you just have to do it.” *shrug* Works for me.

Do you run? What are your tips for success? Are you thinking of trying running? Tell us in the comments!

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