LOVE WHAT YOU DO
wrote a book called "WORKING." It is the most depressing book I've
ever read. Studs went out on the city streets and country roads of the
United States and randomly interviewed people, he asked each of them
two questions: "What do you do for a living?" And "How do you feel about
the work you do."
He asked a cross section of our popularity: all races, religion, men
and women, tall, fat, skinny, short, young and old, rich or poor, friendly
and unfriendly. He then put about one hundred and fifty responses into
The surprising responses were that most people work at jobs they do
not like! Many hate their jobs! There were a few folks that
did have jobs that they enjoyed. I can only recall three out of the
one hundred and fifty he published.
One was a Fireman who explained that he had saved a three-year old boy
from a burning building. That made him feel good! The second
was a Hooker. When asked why she did it, she replied, "Just lucky
I guess." The third was Actor, Rip Torn (and Yes, that is his real
name). He had a long and wonderful career. He not only liked being
an actor, he loved it! He said he was the saddest when he wasn't
I feel the same way about my career as an actor. Someone once
said, "To live a happy life, the secret is to blur the lines between work
and play." An actor's work I called a "play." That's a good
start in the blurring process.
In more than a half century, I have had the privilege of working with
many different people in show business. Almost all of them not only
wanted to be at work, they enjoyed the work. Being around contented
workers is contagious.
If you like variety in your life, you might enjoy being an actor.
After all, we do acting in our daily lives. We just may not think
of it as acting. Throughout the years, I have said, "Honey, I am
off to work." It could mean I was off to Palm Springs, Paris, London,
Las Vegas, Hawaii, Mexico, New York City, Alaska, Canada, a concrete jungle
at a movie studio in Los Angeles, hanging out of a helicopter, being washed
ashore on a far away island, being shot on the Queen Mary, riding horses
and elephants, off the coast of many ports fishing, and much, much more.
There were many more "days at the office", but you can imagine the view
from my desk.
If Studs Terkel had interviewed me, I would have been one of the people
who loved his work!