Lorne makes no secret on his blog about his ongoing battle with depression and anxiety.
And it was clear from the moment that he got here that he was nervous/anxious/terrified about the reading he was doing (of one of his past posts Do I Really Like What I Like? ) A very good read
The thing about Lorne is that in the 10 or so minutes that he spoke, he displayed more courage, bravery, honesty, vulnerability and gumption, then I may have ever seen before. And certainly then I think I have ever done.
I have no problems speaking in front of people, and of telling my personal stories. It's my stock in trade as a clown, actor, and performer. But my personal stories are edited, and vetted, and are what I'm willing to let people see. I let people see the stuff that won't hurt me. The real me is somebody that I keep hidden, so he doesn't get hurt. I've been assuming that most people operate in this same way- at least until I met Lorne.
As I remarked to several people afterwards, Lorne was more truthful and open and vulnerable than any actor could be-- primarily because exposing that much of your raw nerve and self is terrifying and brutal and hard, and no actor could do that 8 times a week. In fact, that's why actors have technique, so you don't go crazy when your son Tiny Tim dies 8 times a week (twice on Wednesdays and Sundays) for 80 performances. If you don't have technique, it's too much to bear.
|Lorne Jaffe speaking at Dad 2.0.|
We weren't even standing for his specific speech (although it was a great essay, and I recommend reading it) We were standing for Lorne and the incredible vulnerability and courage that standing on that stage represented, and that we recognized. And maybe envied a little.
I don't envy Lorne his problems-- but I wish I had a little bit more of his courage. Maybe my writing would be more filled with essential truths and less with half witty observations.