About Me

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I am a full-time mama with a passion for writing and talking to fascinating people. I live in a one horse town with a Cowboy and my son. Thank Lord for cyberspace! I lived a colourful life in Sydney for a number of years. Working in advertising and journalism for FPC and the Sydney Morning Herald. During my time in Sydney I competed in a Dragon Boat race, choreographed a dragshow, used the Share Accomodation advertisements as a way to meet men and was told by Noiseworks frontrunner Jon Stevens that I was a bitch! Then came the decision to move back to country for 3 months to help out my Father with newspaper business while he was having treatment. Convinced I was a city girl I was caught by surprise when I fell in love with a farmer (and no, he didn't want a wife... still doesn't it seems!) convinced him that we needed to see the world, popped off to Vietnam to teach english in Saigon - before realising that the "food" in Nam didn't agree with me... turned out to be Monte - my son who is now with the Cowboy and I back in country NSW! I am in a wonderful stage of my life where I am focusing on the things that really make me tick. Including writing these chronicles.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Mommy Nani Booboo Guest Post!

I am pleased to introduce you to Mommy Nani Booboo (not her real name... seriously) a blogger whose work I have admired since entering the scene...

Not only do I like her because she is a fine writer with an excellent sense of humour - but she is a genuine gal!

I had a little 'bitch' the other day about some of the big guns of blogging who are too cool to answer me... but Mommy Jenn (yes note - I call them Mommy because she is from LA and Mums are Moms over there...) has answered my every request including "How do I change fonts?" or something equally as ridiculous!
Instant respect!
She even forgave me when I made her post - post of the week and then cut and paste it on here instead of linking it to hers (and then left it on here because I couldn't figure out how to delete it) hahaha - I live and learn...

It is my honour to present to you the guest post that I assigned : How is parenting like acting
Do me a favour and drop by her blog and if you love it as much as I do & become her disciple.

Without further ado.....

Here it is....

The Show Must Go On

Sharni asked me to write a guest post on her blog.
I blushed and said okay.
She said I could pick a subject, or she could give me one.
I figured with the way my life has been going lately, I would probably write about poop or vomit… so I wisely suggested she give me a topic.

Do you know what the crazy Aussie gave me? “How is acting like parenting?”
My first response was- uh… it’s not.
As I started thinking about this post, my brain was bombarded by examples of how my present life and past life are on opposite ends of the spectrum, really.
So, I decided to roll with that.
My present job is being a full time mommy.
My previous job was as an actor, both on screen and on stage.
Soooooo not similar!
Allow me to elaborate:

There is no hair and makeup team!
When I wake up in the morning, I do not enjoy a cup of coffee as a talkative gay man puts my hair in rollers, while regaling me with tales of his love life.
If I get a little “shiny” from working too hard, there is no lady with a big powder poof to blot my T-zone.
There is no one to hide my blemishes, enhance my lashes, conceal the bags under my eyes, and dust on a naturally rosy/sun kissed glow.
I don’t even wear makeup nowadays.
My hair lives bunched up in a clip at the back of my head, and I don’t shower unless I have to. Sometimes, I can’t even remember if I’ve brushed my teeth- my toddler doesn’t care, and my dogs actually prefer things that stink.

There is no Craft Service
“Craft Service “ is a term that loosely translates to: oasis of food, and people who are present simply to serve you food, warm your food, or keep it chilled, and make sure you never, ever go hungry.
There are meals at mealtime, snacks all day- ALL DAY, coffee, tea, and pretty much whatever you please.
I am actually getting a little weepy writing this, because I am a mother who loves food, but was cursed with a great aversion to cooking.
Oh, I do it- because I’m responsible for keeping my family healthy. Yup… that’s pretty much the only reason I do it.

There are no stand-ins
This doesn’t so much exist in the Theatre, but when doing TV or film, you get what is called a stand-in.
Focusing of lights and camera angles, etc, can take a long time, and instead of standing there for hours while they focus lights on you- they bring in your stand-in.
This lovely person is generally your height/weight, skin coloring, and hair coloring.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been in the waiting room of the doctor’s office, with a toddler who’s missed his nap, and really wants to dump the potted plant out onto the floor, or eat some lady’s purse sitting next to us, because we’ve been waiting for over an hour … I can’t tell you, how many times… in those moments… in the back of my head… I’m screaming for my stand-in. The stand in that never comes! Never freakin’ comes.

She doesn’t exist

There is no stand-in for mommy.

There is no script.
I don’t know how everything is going to play out. I am not guaranteed a happy ending.
No one has given me the right things to say.
I was always very good at learning my lines… where are my lines?

On the other hand…

There is no script.
I don’t know how everything is going to play out.
It’s all a big surprise!
I can make up and say whatever I want.
I walk around the house talking to inanimate objects all the time (like you don’t).
And I’m MOM, so what I say goes.
Even if I just pulled it out of my ass!
Who cares?
It’s called improvisation- it’s an art form.
You most definitely will “grow a sandbox in your tummy if you eat any more sand!”

I’m not memorizing it, I’m living it.

Now that I’ve had a chance to vent a little, there’s some breathing room in my head to see the brilliance of Sharni’s question.

Maybe acting and motherhood are not alike in the superficial ways.

But there are some fundamental things about acting, not the glitz and glamour, the real things, the things I love about it, the things that make it noble- these are the things that have followed me into parenthood.

Every actor is addicted to the applause.
It means you’ve moved people into clapping for you.
You’ve made them laugh, cry, think, something- you’ve done something to make them respond in a way so primal, as to take two parts of their body and slap them together to make a joyous noise.
That’s cool.

Every parent is also addicted to this applause.
Hot Nerd (my husband) would stand on his head, wiggling his toes, while meowing like a cat, if it would make my son clap with glee.
I puff my cheeks and cross my eyes a million times a day because it makes him squeal with delight. I am his dancing monkey, and I don’t mind one bit.
I gotta tell ya- I never thought any sound would make me feel as good, as several hundred pairs of hands clapping for me as I take my bow, until I heard the sound of just one… one pair of itty bitty hands…

Perhaps the biggest and most real way that acting is like parenting for me, can be summed up in a phrase I’m sure you’ve heard before:

“The show must go on.”
I remember once, years ago, as I was walking down a dirty Chicago street, I somehow got a thin metal rod stuck in my big toe.
I KNOW! How does something like that happen?
Anyway, it looked like some sort of unraveled, wire coat hanger, and it attacked my foot by completely bypassing my sandal, and firmly lodging itself in my big toe.
It was seriously in there- sticking way out the other side and everything.
Now, I had a theatre performance of A Mid Summer Night’s Dream in about 2 ½ hours that I wasn’t about to miss.
I was a main character, with no understudy, and well, you just don’t leave your cast, and a theatre full of people, hangin the breeze.
It’s just not done.
It’s the same with TV and Film.
Time is money- literally thousands and thousands of dollars.
And for the most part, actors subscribe to an unspoken, sense of duty.
The show must always go on.
So, back to the story: I couldn’t walk, what with 6 inches of metal sticking out of the bottom of my toe and 12 inches out the top.
So, I parked my butt on the sidewalk, and slowly started wiggling that metal rod.
I then started tugging at it a bit, took a deep breath… and slowly pulled it all the way through, and out, of my toe.
I walked my bloody self home, had a friend take me to the ER, got some x-rays, told the doc I had a show to do, got a tetanus shot, and made it to the theatre 20 minutes before show time.
I gobbled some painkillers, changed my bandage between scenes, and had a great show. There was never a question of not being able to perform.
Actors will perform with broken bones, and broken hearts. It has to be done-it’s for the greater good.

Parents subscribe to this same philosophy: the show must go on.
In fact, the show never stops.
Doesn’t matter if you sprain your ankle, have a fever, or are just plain exhausted- you are the star of the show and it’s your job to entertain!
I have thoroughly surprised myself with my ability to carry on, no matter the circumstances. You could have a fever of 105, or be feeling crushed by stress, or tending to your own very broken heart- but when you’re needed, you put on a brave front, you smile to let your little one know everything’s okay, and you dance a little jig to elicit a squeal from him or her.
It’s only backstage, in the “wings”, or in your dressing room, that you allow yourself to feel crippled by life.

Because you’re the parent- you have no understudy, no stand-in. That’s the hard part… and also… the best part… because you’re the star… you’re… IRREPLACEABLE.

So, I tip my old, slightly withered hat to you, my fellow parents. Because whether you took Drama class in school, starred in your high school play, been paid the big bucks on a movie set, or never took an acting class a day in your life- if you’re a mom or dad, you know the real meaning of “The show must go on.”

I applaud you.
Take a bow.

I am bowing as I type this - thanks for an enlightening and impressive list of similarities - knew you'd come up with the goods!
Love the bit about the applauding from one set of hands.
Love your work.
Seriously !


  1. I'm laughing so hard, because I wasn't sure if I'd read one of her posts and then I saw the words HOT NERD!

    So yee- ha! Yes, I have, but thank you so much for the great interview.

  2. Good one on Chronicles of Sharnia and it helps a lot.

    If you are a person who want to learn about parenting and love your family then you should enjoy the content of this blog http://todayscliche.com/. Because I did and hope you would love too.

    You have a nice blog. Keep up the good work.


  3. gosh she is HILARIOUS! Going to stalk now!

  4. That was simply fantastic and real funny.

    I'll have to give her blog a serious read soon.

    Keep up the wonderful work.


  5. Very funny. Thank you for posting! I like the part about the stand-in. This gal's good.

  6. Too freakin' funny! No script. Killed me! Twice!

  7. Love the question sharni! So many clever and interesting people on the internet and you are bringing them all to Sharnanigans! MNB you are so right about the show going on and no stand by-that is one of the most difficult adjustments I made. I felt like a warrior (Brave Heart) after a bit of practice-What a smart and funny lady you are. Loved the interview!

  8. That was kind of sad and funny. She's good, and know how to touch a mother's heart. I most definately will check out mommynaniboo's blog!

  9. Really enjoyed this - Thanks Sharni for sharing your space with such interesting and intelligent Women x

  10. my pleasure - that is what I am aiming to bring here... and will continue to do so when I launch my website..... please anyone feel free to let me know of other fantastic, intelligent, witty and inspiring ladies!

  11. All I can say is WOW!!!! She is so whitty--she knows that no performance is greater appreciated then by her child. Something tells me that a book should be coming from her real soon--why keep this fun limited!!! True talent should be shared.

    Thanks for the fun read.

    A proud MOMMY too!

  12. Thanks Everybody! I'm blushing all the way down to my toes.
    And a super thank you to Sharni for being so welcoming! I'm your biggest stalker...but not in a put wierd, small animals in your mailbox kinda way- more like a read your blog because you're lovely kinda way.

  13. Yey MNBB! As the former director of Midsummer, I thank you for weathering the mystery toe rod to make our performance where you kicked some serious tush as Helena... and NEVER EVEN TOLD ME you had been skewered by street shrapnel.


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