Friday, 25 January 2013
I have not been to L.A. since I had a big big nervous breakdown here many moons ago. So I'm here doing my show"Out of Her Mind" (ironic) I thought on the first night I'd just start screaming "Please don't make audition for a sit com" and be re-traumatised. All those years ago I came here all bright and bushy tailed and went back to the UK in a box. I couldn't cope then everyone was "having a nice day" even the weather was always in a good mood so I went darker and darker until I took to my bed and could not be peeled from it for 8 months. I knew I was in big trouble when I started to think "Love Boat" which was on 7 times a day was a really good show. Everything I did here and everyone I met was toxic. I lived in a falllng down house on Laural Canyon where a move star who didn't make it (Helen Twelvetrees) killed herself. Her statue in stone was lying on the bottom of the pool and no one bothered to fish it out. The house was run by a guy the size of the Titanic who did light porn and his Christian wife. Another house mate was a guy who never left his room but chuckled loudly at his own lines as he wrote his film script that would never be made, ever. And some flower child who skipped alot and once asked me if it was bad to be raped on a first date. I ended up taking a shorthand course so I could become a secretary to get out of that constant and irritating sunlight. I sat there for six weeks in a night class. At the end we had a test to check our competency. The teacher rang the bell and we all had to take down shorthand and then hand it in. A few days later she called me in and asked what I thought I was doing. I had handed her pages and pages of swirls on the page. Just loop de loops that's how crazy I got. And now I'm' here for closure.
Monday, 24 December 2012
We are all looking for happiness unless of course we’ve already got it and blessed are those few that have. This is why we have so many self-help books, enough now to cover the equator 78 times. Have you read ‘The Secret?’ 80 million copies sold. Page one informs you that ‘the secret,’ was handed down to us by the ancient Babylonians and clearly it worked for them that’s why there’s so many running around. You can’t move with all the Babylonians living in London.
Next the author tells you Plato, Leonardo Di vinci, Beethoven, Einstien and many others were inspired by his book. I’m going to use that idea, giving myself reviews from dead people. The next 600 pages are filled with advise that boils down to “Think happy thoughts and your dream will come true” just like Tinkerbell promised.” All of this self-help was stolen from Walt Disney he was the father of the new age. “Whistle a happy tune, if you believe in fairies, clap your hands.” From this philosophy flowed “The little Mermaid”, “Snow White” and some early Mickey Mouse. Walt knew the secret of happiness too bad he’s on ice. We’ve got to defrost this guy to squeeze out some more wisdom. Walt knew when to make an exit.
Why are we so mean to ourselves? What did we do wrong? Why, if we are the best that evolution has tossed up so far, are we so abusive to ourselves. Each of us has a nagging parent implanted in our heads. ”Don’t do that…why didn’t you….you should have….but you didn’t” on an endless loop tape. (My mother would say she was only telling me what a failure I was because she loved me). Most of us if we ever compared our inner leit-motif, would sue each other for plagiarism; our internal themes are so alike.
No other species is as cruel as we are to ourselves. We’d never dream of treating our pets the way we treat ourselves. We whip ourselves to keep moving like we would an old horse till it falls over exhausted; the hooves made into glue. We even treat our own underpants with more compassion, delicately spin drying them, adding softener so they don’t have such a bumpy ride, hanging them to dry in a cool breeze. I have asked so many people if they have ever had the voice in their head say, “Congratulations you’ve done a wonderful job and may I say how attractive you are today.” The answer is no one. I’m sure they’re out there I just never met them.
The problem is that now we use words and when we do underperform, the inner voices begin with ‘I should have ’ and ‘I could have.’ That old familiar tune.
Here’s another way in which we distract ourselves from the big question; we have an aspect of the human condition that might not be as positive as we’d like; our obsession to keep busy. There is no time to rest, no time to think about what we really should be doing. I’m not criticizing I’m as driven as the next person.
It got so bad that when I went into labour while doing a TV show, the floor manager gave me “5-4-3-2“ someone would cut the cord and “Action.”
Ghandi said, “There is more to life than speed.” Unfortunately he didn’t tell us what, he just left us hanging while he pranced around in his nappy.
Friday, 12 October 2012
Why aren't we asking the big questions? A Q&A with Ruby Wax
One in four people have some form of mental illness, and Ruby Wax wants to talk about it. Watch her TEDTalk, posted 10th October and inspired by her show Losing It, to start the conversation. One project she didn't get to mention onstage at TEDGlobal: This winter, Wax started up the Black Dog Tribe (http://www.
), an online network for people with mental illness to connect with each other.
So the TED Blog asked Ruby for more about the Black Dog, her next show, performing in mental institutions, and the big questions that we still can't talk about.
In years to come, anyone consulting the class of 2012 photograph from Oxford University’s Kellogg College will see among the dignified students looking earnestly into the camera, a very mature (in attitude not years) student looking demented with happiness - that would be me.
I'm talking about this word parenting, of which I know nothing. Even though my lower half has been used as a channel tunnel for 3 new arrivels...I still know nothing. Yes, I've had three, count those stretch marks. Even the word Parent fills me with fear and loathing...I remember when I'd hear, "Wait until your parents find out, boy is your bottom going to be whipped…" No, not my parents. Please here take my fingernails, I'll tweek them out myself, just don't tell my parents.