march-24-09-187

Rebecca

Sometimes I do things just because I think it will later serve me as “material.” Last week, it meant I responded positively when an agent called and invited me to take Adelaide to a commercial audition.  I was going to go ironically.

I wanted to see how it all worked, wanted to poke fun at the moms who take this kind of thing seriously, wanted a professional to look at my daughter and say, “Yes, she’s the one. Send the rest home. What a face.” 

Dressed in the t-shirt I had slept in and a pair of flip-flops, I made sure not to care. Levi took stock of my carefree approach to the morning routine and teased, “Come on Rebecca, let’s stop pretending this is about Adelaide.”

The casting director told me she just wanted to see how well Adelaide could follow directions. “You tell her to clap, she claps. You tell her to put her arms above her head, she puts her arms above her head. That sort of thing.”

I danced in front of three casting agents and a disinterested sixteen-month old. “Clap Addy! Clap! Clap!”

She peered around me to get a better look at the camera. “You can do this Addy, clap! Clap! CLAP!!!”

Nothing. “Up high!” I cheered, raising my arms above my head. “Up high! Up high!”

She picked at the Velcro on her gold sandals.

“She usually does it,” I explained. “She’s just tired. But she can do it.”

CLAP. UP HIGH. CLAP. COME ON ADDY. CLAPCLAPCLAPCLAP.

She turned her head so that she could see me out of the corner of her eyes, but wouldn’t have to directly acknolwedge that this woman hopping about—desperately trying to impress a chubby casting director wearing a Gap Bo(red) t-shirt–was actually her mother.

It was a total bust (not that I cared). “Isn’t it always that way?” the mom closest to me observed. “They do these things at home no problem, but when it really counts they freeze.”

“Uh yeah, this is actually our first time,” I said as I packed up our things.

I replayed the scene in my head as we walked home.

 “You know,” I swung the stroller around so were facing each other. “I can only help you if you you’re willing to help yourself.” I crouched down so she would know I was serious. “I could only do so much in there. I needed you to meet me half way. This whole thing turned out to be a giant waste of my time. Do you know how much money they would have given you?”

 I was gaining momentum. “In fact, the next time the agent calls, I’m not so sure I’m even going to take you in. That’s of course assuming we even get a second call. Frankly, I wouldn’t be surprised if…”

She cut me off. Her eyes started dancing as threw her arms high up in the air, and then, pulling them down just as quickly, she started to clap.

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