December 2, 2021 #1 Local News, Forum, Information and Event Source for Venice Beach, California.

Guy Camilleri: A Surfer in New York!

By Guy Camilleri

As an actor, I can’t help but feel strongly about what actors go through to be seen and heard. And, at times, even more concerning, is what we put ourselves through along the way. I say this from experience, having dedicated many years with blinders on while living in New York City. 

In hindsight, I wish I would have broadened my scope and lived more outside the circle of focusing day and night on what had to be done in order to become a working actor. For several years, I was relentless in my pursuit, dogged to the bone, determined to prove to myself I could stand alongside others on Broadway. I got as close as Off-Broadway and had a blast, though it (I) cost myself physically and spiritually in doing so. 

Fortunately, I pulled the ripcord just in the nick of time. Literally and spiritually, surfing saved my life (once again). I don’t recall the straw that broke the camel’s back, but at some point, I woke to the fact that after eight years, perhaps it was time to find a middle ground between Hawaii and New York. That middle ground was Los Angeles.

More on this next time… 

As for being a surfer in the big apple, the routine to go surfing was, to put it mildly, absurd. In addition to occasionally renting a car, I would carry my 9’0” longboard from 94th and West End to the subway station at 94th and Broadway. And then, down a flight of steps, through the turnstile and the wait for an approaching subway car. 

And then, the games began! Once that door opened, bam! The 7 am rush hour crowd coming right at you, all those people shoving each other in order to board or depart the subway car, leaving me to fend for myself with my nine-foot surfboard. Madness! There was no way in hell, they were going to make it easy on me, and I can’t blame them.

I will always remember the classic New York expressions on some of the faces telling me precisely what they were feeling about this guy holding a behemoth of a surfboard.

Once in the car, forget about it! That’s when the real challenge began… I had to turn on my warmest Hawaiian face and ‘rely on the kindness of strangers’ as I tried to get someone to look at me. Not too much eye contact though, but just enough so they might slide an inch or so one way or another so that I could eventually get to a corner and stand the board up. My reality consisted of standing the board upright or sliding it under the legs of those sitting on the bench seats. What a surfer will endure to go surfing, right? 

I recall one morning, a group of teenagers entering the car, sitting across me noticing my surfboard running parallel to the bench seat. One of the kids spoke up: “Where you going with that ironing board, man.” I told ‘em it wasn’t an ironing board, but a surfboard. 

I will always treasure those moments with people lifting their legs up and over the surfboard as I gently slid it down the subway car. This act, in of itself, speaks volumes at how tolerant New Yorkers genuinely are. 

In any event, my tolerance was running thin, and I knew this lifestyle and this narrow approach to being an actor wasn’t cutting it. It was time to head west, which, thankfully I did.

Rock On!

Guy Camilleri is a Venice-based actor, acting-life coach, screenwriter and surfer living in Venice Beach, CA. His acting classes are packed on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings at the Electric Lodge with actors, writers, directors and creative people from all walks of life. 

His private coaching specializes in building undeniable characters for film, television, stage, auditions, self-taped auditions, original material, solo shows, reels and self-expression in any field of interest. To register or audit a class or to book a coaching session, visit www.rawactingstudio.com. Follow Guy’s column on Yo! Venice and RAW acting studio on Instagram and Facebook.

Related Posts

The Best CBD Gift For Every Occasion

November 30, 2021

November 30, 2021

Thanks to the growing popularity of Hemp CBD, there’s a lot of new and unique CBD products that will make...

Venice Family Clinic Completes Merger with South Bay Family Health Care

November 9, 2021

November 9, 2021

Venice Family Clinic and South Bay Family Health Care, which have together provided more than a century of health care...

New French Restaurant Opens by Beach in Playa del Rey

October 20, 2021

October 20, 2021

Westside Dining Scene October 21, 2021 By Dolores Quintana There’s a new French restaurant open in Playa Del Rey according...

Breaking Barriers Through Sport

October 19, 2021

October 19, 2021

Ex-Navy Rescue swimmer and triathlete, Jordan Hunter is changing the statistics of African Americans not knowing how to swim and...

Community Volunteer Patrol Program Brings Civilians New Insight Into Law Enforcement

October 19, 2021

October 19, 2021

The West LA Police Department has a community patrol program bridging the gap between civilians and law enforcement. Video brought...

Pali High Debuts Fall Musical Avenue Q Live on Stage

October 12, 2021

October 12, 2021

Pali high students bring the musical Avenue Q to the stage for a limited time. Video brought to you by...

UCLA awarded $1 Million Dollars Towards Enabling Safer Bike Commutes

October 11, 2021

October 11, 2021

The Civic Bicycle Commuting team along with partners is one of six competitors for the Civic Innovation Challenge backed by...

Carmelo Anthony Will Be Crucial The Lakers’ Title Chase, From The Bench

October 8, 2021

October 8, 2021

The Los Angeles Lakers remain the second favorites for the NBA championship in 2022 on the back of their slow...

Barn Owl Nesting Box Program Comes to The Westside.

October 5, 2021

October 5, 2021

The barn owl nesting box program from Citizens for Los Angeles Wildlife is helping these birds create a network of...

Missing Woman Last Seen in Venice Beach

September 29, 2021

September 29, 2021

Jessie Jean-Baptiste last seen Saturday By Sam Catanzaro Police are seeking a missing 25-year-old woman last seen in Venice Beach...

Canstruction Fights Hunger Through Art

September 27, 2021

September 27, 2021

International hunger relief fundraiser Canstruction makes an appearance at the Westfield Century City mall and we have the highlights. Video...

The Rich History of Prehemptive CBD Creams

September 27, 2021

September 27, 2021

The following is a question and answer with Paul Herve, founder of Prehemptive CBD creams, based on the formulas of a botanical...

Top-Rated Poster Printing Services in Los Angeles

September 10, 2021

September 10, 2021

So you want a piece of promotional artwork that is eye-catching and makes a statement. Maybe you’re a store looking...

Comedian Fuquan Johnson One of 1 of 3 Dead Following Suspected Overdose at Venice Party

September 7, 2021

September 7, 2021

Early Saturday morning incident remains under investigation By Sam Catanzaro Comedian Fuquan Johnson was among one of three people who...

Gambling and Mental Health: Tips For The Casino

August 31, 2021

August 31, 2021

With the advent of online casinos, gambling has become a more popular pastime than ever before. It’s estimated that a...