I remember the first time I died. I was a sophomore in high school and I'd been talked into doing the school play. It was "Riders to the Sea" and I was to play Bartley, a young fisherman who meets a watery end. I had a few lines at the top, but spent most of the play lying dead on stage. The actress playing my mother stood over my corpse and cried and cried. In the audience, my real mother cried and cried. At the moment, I knew this was my calling. And so...I did the only logical thing. I finished high school and moved to Japan.
Yes, Japan. I was 19 years old, and for the next two years I did nothing but obsessively study Japanese (primarily by hitch hiking around the country). I did the occasional tv appearance as the wacky Japanese speaking white guy, but what I really longed for was to be on stage again. When my stint in Japan was up, I knew the time had finally come. And so....I became a vintage clothing dealer.
Yes, there was a time when I literally knew every thrift store between the Washington/ Canada border and San Franciso. I sent boxes of old levis, Mork and MIndy toys, and Eames chairs back to Tokyo where eager collectors snapped them up. After 7 years of doing nothing but buying and selling dust covered junk I knew the time had finally come, and so, in August, 2001....
I finally made the move to Los Angeles and resumed my passion for playing dead. Since then I've been stabbed gobbled up by Harley Quinn's Hyena, shot (by Clive Owen and Elizabeth Berkely,) and yes, crushed by an ATM in Breaking Bad. Yet, no matter how many times I'm killed, it seems I can never quite reach that elusive feeling that I've been longing for.
And so, I forever wander from role to role, from death, to death, desperatley trying to recapture that moment, on the stage of the Sonoma Valley High School auditorium, when I made my on-stage mother and my real mother cry at the same time.
Why I'm a character actor.