Alanna Airitam answers James Lipton’s 10 questions

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Have you watched Inside the Actor’s Studio with James Lipton? In this popular TV show, James Lipton interviews legendary guests. The conversations always end with his famous list of ten questions. Over the years, CEG has asked our artists these same ten questions to gain insight into their personalities and their work. This week, Alanna Airitam answers James Lipton’s Top Ten!

1. What is your favorite word? 

“Yes.” 

2. What is your least favorite word? 

“I can’t.” 

3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? 

Knowing that I have a choice to create my own experience in this life. I’ve created a belief system for myself that allows me to dream as big as I want and believe it is all very possible. We only have this one life to live. What else is there to do except to burn as bright as possible and try to ignite a fire in others along the way? It’s my responsibility to see beyond my perceived limitations and continue to push myself to be the best version of me that I can be. It’s hard work and if theres any consistency to it at all, it’s that it is constantly scary as fuck. It’s humbling as fuck. I never know what I’m doing and only have a vague idea of where I’m going. But the alternative to give up is much, much scarier to me. And the reward is always bigger and brighter than I ever thought possible and gives me the capacity to love more deeply, see more clearly, and experience more fully. I will always be on this path. I will succeed sometimes and fail at others, but I’ll always get back up and do it again. Because that’s what life is about.

4. What turns you off creatively, spiritually or emotionally? 

Blaming, complaining and dwelling on limitations. I meditate daily as a practice so I can be aware of my own limiting beliefs, pains, and fears. I try my best to bust through these things because they hold me back from being the person I want to be, or having the experience I want to have in this life. I figure I only get this one life, I don’t have the luxury to spend most of it blaming others for not being where I want to be, dwelling on that, and then complaining about it –not when I know I haven’t done everything within my power to create what I want. I can’t be lazy and then complain about not being successful. I can’t live in fear and then complain about not being seen or heard. I can’t point the blame outside of myself if I’m not doing what I’m supposed to be doing. Doing this kills everything in me. It makes me not be able to see possibility anymore. I can longer see the magic around me and my potential. I lose sight of who I am. And that leads to despair, depression, and death.

5. What sound or noise do you love? 

Music. I love all kinds of music, but recently have been listening to music without lyrics or lyrics in other languages that I don’t understand so the words become a part of the music. Currently, I’ve been playing a lot of Ali Farka Touré and Toumani Diabaté. The right music is incredible powerful and transformative. I can indulge or shift my moods with music. Along with drawing on cave walls, it’s one of the earliest forms of expression we have. How can something so ancient not be healing and magical?

6. What sound or noise do you hate? 

Leaf blowers. They are loud and obnoxious and pointless. And it seems like the people who use them need to use them first thing in the morning.

7. What is your favorite curse word? 

Fuck. Is there a more perfect word? I believe it is the most intelligent word in the english language because it’s just so fucking versatile. It’s not inherently synonymous with any gender and so can be used fluidly without it being tied back to an underhanded insult to women (like so many curse words are). And I love how it can be added to other words for even greater effect such as, “I can’t believe that fuckweasel was voted into office.”

8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? 

I can only choose one? There are so many things I want to experience though! I always thought it would be cool to be a sociologist or an anthropologist because I’ve always been interested in how people relate to each other. I’m extremely fascinated with humans as a species and why we do the things we do. I want to understand what conscious and unconscious parts of ourselves drive us forward or hold us back from reaching our full potential. I think I’d want to specifically focus on the study of fear and love as cultural and individual motivations. 

9. What profession would you not like to do?

I would not want to be a leaf blower person, a politician, or anything where I have to sit at a computer in a cubical all day.

10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?

God: “Welcome back! haha for a minute, I wasn’t sure you were going to make it. LOL. We took bets and I’m telling’ ya… it was close. Now I’ve gotta go collect from Tupac. Come on in! Prince is about to perform and we’ve all been waiting.”

How do you see me? is on view through October 27, 2018.

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