In a way, Jim Anderson has already accomplished nearly everything one could ask for.
He’s a high school football coach helping mold young athletes into men of character. He’s performed for huge crowds with his Elvis tribute show. He’s toured and recorded CDs, and until he was injured, he was a law enforcement officer doing his part to ensure that his community stayed safe.
All of those things alone are worthy enough to round out a balanced life.
But he always wanted to be an actor. He always wanted to know what it was like to be on the silver screen and be a part of the entertainment business.
And while that’s a young man’s pursuit reserved for people who don’t yet have the responsibility of families or full-time jobs or community involvement, none that deterred Anderson from getting his Screen Actor’s Guild card so he could broaden his horizons and take a step towards that dream.
On Tuesday while in San Francisco doing work as an extra on the set of the popular HBO series “Ballers” – starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson – Anderson befriended actor Christopher McDonald, better known as “Shooter McGavin” in the Adam Sandler vehicle Happy Gilmore.
On set to play the owner of the Dallas Cowboys in the series, McDonald struck up a conversation with Anderson about the ring that he was wearing – the same ring that all of the players and coaches of the 2015 Sierra High School football team were awarded after winning the CIF Division IV-A state championship – and asked if he could wear it during the scene he was shooting.
While I detailed this in a story earlier this week, the remarkable thing is that Anderson has put himself in a position where such a thing could actually take place – leaving the aw shucks, star struck approach at the door and connecting with an actor as an actor to the point that he wore something of his in a scene.
If that’s not a sign that he’s arrived, then I don’t know what is.
Facebook battles –
are they really worth it?
There’s no doubt that social media is an amazing tool for connectivity – putting billions of people within reach and allowing for the free flow of information and ideas in a way that has never been seen before.
But this election may well have ruined it for me.
No, I’m not going to rage about “fake news” or how certain candidates are going to destroy the world or rekindle certain political movements made famous almost a century ago.
There was a time however – about 48 hours ago to be completely honest – that I would have done exactly that while foolishly thinking that my opinions would made a difference in the lives of people who come across my rant.
You see, this persistent back-and-forth between different people of differing ideas works well in theory – one of my best friends, Chris Becker, can go round-after-around with me about politics and there’s never even a chance that our passions will get between our friendship – but in practice with complete strangers or casual acquaintances those sorts of things just simply don’t work the way they should.
So I’ve decided not to be a part of that for the time being.
As I posted on Facebook earlier this week, you can only be on edge and ready to battle for so long before that sort of mentality starts to become you – until it spills over to the loved ones in your life that don’t deserve that sort of hair trigger response to everyday situations.
I used to pride myself on being a calm, relaxed person and I started to see that slipping away and getting replaced with an angry, bitter, judgmental person – the sorts of people I used to tell myself I was never going to become – without even realizing it.
So I’m now back to using Facebook as it was intended to be used – posting pictures of family and dogs and funny anecdotes that used to be more than enough to keep me satisfied.
Sure there won’t be nearly as many likes and it won’t create the “open dialogue” I convinced myself was necessary, but at least my sanity will be in check.
And that is far more important.
Berkeley – you’ve
done a 180-degree turn
On Thursday night, a mini-riot broke out on the campus of the University of California in opposition to the speaking engagement of a Breitbart technology editor that has become a flashpoint in the polarization of American politics.
This happens early every time he shows up to speak on a campus, so the fact that it happened is not what’s shocking.
But considering that Berkeley was ground-zero for the free speech movement in the 1960s, the idea that such a hallowed and revered institution could allow for the suppression of thoughts and ideas unabashedly is almost hard to believe that suppression of that magnitude could actually exist there.
Regardless of what one feels, it’s never acceptable to resort to violence or destruction in the name of your political ideology.
While Berkeley is an hour and a world away, there’s a part of me that is worried that such an approach has become commonplace when confronted with ideas that are not like our own, and such a platform on harms the tenets of what that group is supposedly fighting for.
I used to love going to Berkeley and spending time walking around the campus and visiting the bookstores and shops and getting a feel for a town that embraced ideas.
Hopefully that sense of academic freedom isn’t gone forever.
To contact reporter Jason Campbell email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 209.249.3544.