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Isn't It Ironic?
January 3, 2014 - Phyllis Sigal
I used to have the best story concerning irony, but a recent turn-of-events has given me a better one.
The runner-up tale had to do with my daughter Amanda's English class. They were studying the concept of irony, when their teacher, Miss Hinkle, asked for examples.
"Like rain on your wedding day," someone said.
Yes, yes, that would be ironic.
Other classmates chimed in with:
"It's like a free ride when you've already paid."
"A traffic jam when you're already late."
"10,000 spoons when all you need is a knife."
"It's a black fly in your Chardonnay."
All good examples.
Miss Hinkle was proud of her students for coming up with so many.
And then the giggling started. Unbeknown to Miss Hinkle, all of the examples were lines from the Alanis Morisette song, "Isn't It Ironic."
"And isn't it ironic ... don't you think?" Morisette laments throughout the tune.
I wish I had been a fly in the Chardonnay ... I mean, on the classroom wall, that day.
So, how about this for irony:
A young actor decides to move west to Los Angeles from New York, after several years of auditioning, lots of callbacks and some jobs booked in the Big Apple. There were some dry spells, for sure. And steady restaurant jobs were necessary if he wanted to eat and pay the bills.
But two weeks after he arrived in L.A., he auditioned for a part in an independent film. The audition was procured by his New York agent. (Isn't that ironic?)
A couple of weeks later he gets a call from the director. After a 30-minute chat, the director offers the young actor the job.
And where does this film shoot in which he's just accepted a role? Outside of Pittsburgh!
"Isn't it ironic ... don't you think?" ... Alanis' voice streams through my brain.
His first audition. His first job. One for one!
And the working title of the film is "1/1." Isn't that ironic?
This young actor, coincidentally, is none other than my son, Leland.
Much to this mother's excitement, Leland got to come home for about 11 days to shoot the film, which deals with a young woman's relationship with her mother, father and friend, Daniel, in the face of a family tragedy.
The young woman, Lissa, is played by Lindsey Shaw (known for "Pretty Little Liars," "Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide," "Suburgatory"); her mother is Dendrie Taylor, (known for "Out of the Furnace," "Jarhead," "Sons of Anarchy," "Saving Mr. Banks," "True Blood"); and her dad is Judd Nelson (known for "The Breakfast Club," "Suddenly Susan").
And Daniel is played by Leland Alexander Wheeler (known for "Blue Bloods," and for being my son).
Daniel is "smart, but often self-centered. Or, more exactly, he's always thinking about abstract concepts and has trouble connecting with other people. Lissa is in love with him, which he knows and takes advantage of. Experiments with drugs, but won't get addicted. Hates the small town he's from and can't wait to leave." (More irony, perhaps? Or coincidence?)
It was a great experience for him, working with the L.A. crew, meeting the actors, getting to know the director.
"I'm loving it all," he texted me one night.
And well he should. It seems to confirm he made the right decision at the right time.
Johnny Carson once said, "Talent alone won't make you a success. Neither will being in the right place at the right time, unless you are ready. The most important question is: 'Are you ready?'"
Well, Johnny, I think he is. I think he's ready.
Nothing ironic about that.
... Unless of course he's on his way to an audition and there 's "a traffic jam when you're already late."
Photo by Linda Harkcom | for the Daily Courier Two of the stars of the film '1/1,' Lindsey Shaw (left) and Leland Wheeler (right), with Marie Murphy, owner of 'The Endzone' in Mt. Pleasant where the actors filmed several scenes last month.