I have been slacking. “Where is Aaron’s first Bacon Blog?” I hear that question every day.
I have never heard that question. Why are you not clamoring for an Aaron Bacon Blog? Come to think of it, I am suddenly very uneasy about posting my first Bacon Blog.
To date, there have been four entries in the Bacon Blog, two by Ashley and two by Julie. Casting can be so opaque and my colleagues have used this space to offer a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the business. Julie touched on the craziness of the production schedule, and on the demands placed on actors to fit into it. Ashley wrote about the need to embrace imperfection and accept that so much that goes into casting is beyond your, or our, control.
Their posts have been personal, positive and, hopefully, informative, and while their writing has impressed me, their earnestness…gives me pause.
Why? Do I disagree with their sentiments? Not at all. Their observations are, in my experience, spot on. Their willingness to speak from the heart is uncommon. And you cannot argue with the results. When Imagine (our local industry magazine) published Ashley’s inaugural Bacon Blog, we knew that she was on to something.
My problem is instead one of style. I am just not earnest. I do not speak or write from the heart. Rather, I am sarcastic to a fault. If you’ve ever asked me how I’m doing, invariably my response has probably been, with a deep sigh and/or grimace, “oh, you know, living the dream.” As if to say that everything sucks.
Of course, everything does not suck. By any measure things are great. I have two very young, very healthy, very wonderful kids. I have an awesome wife. I have an interesting job that I enjoy immensely.
But all of those things can suck. Toddlers can be insufferable, casting with its deadlines and personalities and pressures can be stressful, and spouses have a way of, like, being right about things that you think you are right about but are actually definitely wrong about.
For me, for whatever reason, it is far easier, and more interesting, and usually funnier, to make light of the suck than to expound on the good. It always has been. So, my problem is, how will my contractually obligated blog posts fit with theirs?
We are definitely not contractually obligated to post to this blog.
One early audition, when they were first starting out, Ashley and Julie needed something to use as a mark on the floor. The only thing they had handy was a roll of duct tape that looked like bacon. So they put a strip down and told every actor to “step on the bacon.” It was absurd, but people loved it, and it quickly became Slate’s thing. In a sense, it is our little mark on casting in Boston.
The Bacon Blog is born from this happy accident. So, while it is a blog on a casting website and we will surely devote much, if not most, of its space to our (only occasionally correct) thoughts on casting and acting and production in general, we will also allow ourselves from time to time to go off topic.
I will be just as likely to post a great recipe for some bacon-centric dish as I am to write about audition room etiquette, or where an actor should place their gaze, or whether it is important or not to be off-book. Someday I may be so short of material that I finally write my essay on why Return of the Jedi, and not Empire Strikes Back, is actually the greatest Star Wars film of all time. I do promise, however, that I will not share personal potty training stories.
I actually cannot make that promise. Something like 70% of my best material involves my children’s, uh, refuse.
It is, after all, called the Bacon Blog. We’re clearly not taking ourselves too seriously. Which actually means that it is kind of perfect for me.