Me: Really? What’s that like?
Him: It’s super boring. A lot of filing permits. Tons of paperwork.
Me: That’s not what I imagine.
Him: I know. Everyone thinks there’s all this designing and drawing and overseeing a workforce, but it’s 90% paperwork.
Me: Even so that’s a sexy profession. Architect.
Him: Ha… Thanks. So what do you do?
Me: Oh boy.
Me: This is where it usually goes horribly wrong.
Him: What? Shut up. What do you do for a living?
Me: I freelance.
Him: Doing what, dummy?
Me: I do comedy gigs, and I teach improv, and I do freelance writing.
Him: Oh my God, that’s so cool.
Him: I love comedy. I think that’s so cool.
Me: No you don’t.
Him: I don’t?
Me: No. People usually get defensive and annoyed when I tell them I’m a comic.
Me: Eh. I’ve met a lot of jerk-o’s.
Him: Well, I think it’s cool.
Me: Well I think you’re cool Mister Architect.
Him: Is the entertainment business difficult?
Me: Yeah. I guess it is, kind of.
Him: You have to have all that talent.
Me: I dunno. That struck me as funny.
Him: What did?
Me: You don’t need talent to succeed in showbiz.
Him: Hahaha, what are you talking about? Of course you do!
Me: Not in my experience. I mean, don’t get me wrong, talent helps, and it always seems to surprise people when someone has it. But, I wouldn’t say you need it to be in showbiz.
Him: You’re joking.
Me: Not at all.
Him: Well what do you need?
Me: Tenacity. Drive. Ambition.
Him: Really? You don’t need talent?
Me: Look at Anna Paquin.
Him: Stop! I love True Blood.
Me: Sure, but can you say that she’s talented?
Him: Stop. She’s likable.
Me: Well that’s different than talent. That helps a lot. So does being good at politics. Showing up on time. Cultivating the image of being a reliable, hard worker. Not being crazy. That helps too.
Him: Interesting. What’s the most important thing an artist can have?
Me: That’s the most important thing an artist can have. That and tenacity.
Me: How are you going to be a movie star without having the crazy delusion that you could somehow be a movie star?
Him: Hm… that does make sense, actually…
Me: How are you going to write an opera, without the delusional belief that you could move people with your music?
Him: But isn’t passion something that wells up inside you? Isn’t that what great artists do? Get fired up and inspired and let out all their passions?
Me: I guess so, but doesn’t it sound delusional that someone else might take notice? Also, that kind of inspiration happens every once in a while, but otherwise it’s usually just hard work. Plugging away, day after day. Tenacity.
Him: We’ve both got the same point of view, then, about our respective professions…
Me: Which is what?
Him: That it’s 90% paper work.
Me: Hahaha! Yeah I guess we do.
Him: Can I buy you another drink?
Me: Yeah. Yeah, I think you can.