In my pajamas, I sleepily make my way to the coffee machine in the lobby of my boyfriend’s apartment, but the door won’t open into the room with the industrial cappuccino-making machine with fancy cups and skylights. I gaze at the coffee machine sitting on display like the Crown Jewels, yearning for that flawless sip of dark roasted African coffee.

The lanky man working behind the desk with long fingers and crimson hair coloring types away on the computer, then gazes up at me and watchfully shouts out through the glass doors that they’re not open for another ten minutes. This man still doesn’t recognize me, despite my frequent morning coffee runs. I turn away like a wounded puppy dog: shoulders drooped, chest concaved, my tail between my legs dragging behind pathetically.

1 hour later…

The lady in the polka dot dress and gym shoes should call my name any minute. Her hair frizzes out on all ends like she’s been electrocuted. I try not to stare.

I peek at the sides I’m holding; you know, just in case I want to practice, but the scenes are just the coach (me) yelling out to kids, things like: “Get down and give me ten, get ready for sit-ups or I’ll make you run the mile!” I don’t have any dialogue with anyone, and feel ridiculous just shouting lines out randomly. Not to mention, I don’t exactly look like your average gym teacher. Worried I’m going to make a fool of myself I go over it anyway and hold my head up high when I’m called into the room.

I change clothes in my car.

And walk a red-carpet, stop, angle my body to look thinner, bend my right leg and place my arm gently on my hip so it sticks out just like the girls in magazines and smile at the cameras shooting pictures like rapid fire. I’m at a private party for someone who’s been recently inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

And there are some characters here. Here’s an example:

Him: “Hi. I just had dinner with Woody Allen.”

Me: “Hi. I’m Alice. Nice to meet you. That’s great; he’s my favorite.”

Him: “I know George Clooney.”

Me: “Cool.”

Him: “Yeah; he invited me to stay at his home in Italy whenever I want. I’m a major producer.”

Me: “Congratulations.”

I thankfully recognize the blonde passing out tacos and use her as my escape.

Later that evening I enter my sanctuary: my bathtub. Candle- light blankets the room in a burnt orange glow and I try to calm my mind. The faucet drip-drip-drips, which I find to be soothing. My roommate Ana pops her head in and sets something on the edge of the tub for me. Coffee.




My favorite part of every day.

Alice can be reached at

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Tales of a Toluca Lake Actress

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