Letters from Out West | The New Yorker
My darling Stephanie,
It has been nigh a fortnight since I left Topeka and your loving gaze to follow my dream of becoming an actor in Los Angeles, California. Though it was a harrowing journey, I experienced some measure of elation when I disembarked the Greyhound, at Hollywood Boulevard. A fellow offered me a hot meal in exchange for taking what he called an “E-meter” reading. I shall not soon forget his kindness.
I have taken up residence in a quaint studio ﬂat in the heart of it all—Northridge. My roommates, two Australians here for pilot season, assure me that it is a mere two-hour drive to most auditions.
My ﬁrst order of business is to procure an agent. I am conﬁdent my three years of regional theatre and online “MasterClass” with Kevin Spacey have more than prepared me to impress.
Our parting was such sweet sorrow, dear Stephanie. But I promise you I shall become famous. And then I will send for you, that we might ﬁnally be married.
Your Darling Brandon
Hey Brandon. Got your . . . letter(?!). LOL. You know you can just text me, right? Cali sounds fun. You are hilarious with the marriage stuff. You totally should get on “Big Bang Theory.” It’s so good. Anyway, it was nice meeting you at BW3s and if you’re ever back in I’ll give you some more free wings, on me. And maybe don’t send letters to my house because my boyfriend Dustin got mad. K Bye! —Steph
Your missive warmed the very cockles of my heart. Oh, how I long to clap eyes on your face again.
Some welcome news! After weeks of sustaining myself as a private valet for a service called Uber, I am pleased to tell you that I have ﬁnally procured representation, with the Lil’ StarMakers Agency. As the only person over the age of twelve on the roster, my agent, Barry, assures me that success is guaranteed.
Tomorrow I have an audition for a pilot called “Bad Daddies,” a farce about ne’er-do-well fathers who also happen to be quirky homosexual cat burglars. May the Muses guide my performance.
Always and forever,
Hey Brandon. Things here sort of suck because my hours got cut back after I told the new manager to shove it when he asked me to clean the bathroom after someone booted in it. Good luck with the pilot. Seriously tho, maybe just Snapchat me because my boyfriend Dustin gets pissed when he sees weird paper from other guys at our place. —Steph
I can barely contain my excitement. I have been offered the role of Barista 2 in the forthcoming “Bad Daddies” show! No doubt I impressed the producers greatly with my line “It’s called venti, not large. Awkward!”
My name shall be in lights in no time!
Whattup, Brandon. This is Dustin. Steph left me because I got another D.U.I. and crashed her PT Cruiser. I’m pretty messed up TBH. L.A. sounds dope. That’s sick about the acting stuff. You should do “Big Bang Theory.” It’s hilarious. Peace, Dustin
My Darling Dustin,
I am weeping openly in a Y.M.C.A. as I write this, yet your kind words were a much needed balm to my pain. I am broken on the wheel of success, a shell of my former self. I was just now informed by my agent, Barry, that the producers of “Bad Daddies” want to “go in another direction.”
I am without prospects. I have lost all hope.
Hey Brandon. That blows!!! Things suck here too ’cause I broke my tooth on a Laffy Taffy. Dustin
Dustin, my angel!
Worry not—my prayers have been answered! My agent, Barry, called to inform me that I have been cast as the lead in a CBS pilot. Apparently, my Midwestern accent has made me eligible for employ as a diversity hire! My friends at the Scientology center have been so helpful. I shall send for you soon, that we might be married.
Until then, whenever you need me, look up. My name is written in the stars.