I have, for better or worse, the opposite of a stage mother. It’s not that my parents didn’t think I was secretly brilliant as a child—thanks to the educational Disney cartoon Ben and Me, I could recite the Declaration of Independence before I was out of diapers—it’s just they just didn’t seem to care what I became when I grew up, so long as I voted Democrat and understood that my “life partner” was not obligated to have a Y-chromosome.
I only noticed their indifference because my best friend growing up in Chelsea was a child actor who was tragically let go after the Roseanne pilot, reportedly for having a beef with Sara Gilbert. Since I often accompanied him to his auditions, I actually had a few agents approach me to slap my mug on Shrinky Dinks boxes and the like, offers at which my mom just rolled her eyes. This was circa 1983, but I’m sure she’d roll them much harder right now, 30 years later, if she knew that I recently sent photos of her grandson to a Gap casting call.
I KNOW. I swore I’d never be that parent, the one who gazes beatifically at her toddler bashing a rock against a white picket fence and thinks, catalog model! But it’s legitimately hard to not view your kid as exceptional in every way; in my experience, procreating is like donning a pair of person-specific permanent beer goggles. Read More