I was talking to a bartender recently about how my mother (who's parents owned a restaurant) made me promise, that as an aspiring actor, I would NEVER wait tables. She told me it was one of the hardest gigs in the world and that I should do anything but that. I made the promise, and have kept all of these years. But of course the conversation made me think, again, of all the things we as actors do to make money when we aren't fortunate enough to be in a show that's "paying the bills."
Here are just a few of the things I have done to make money - some of them more artistic than others:
Office temp work at places like Columbia University, Bankers Trust and Chrysalis Records (where I was offered my first full-time job in the city after just two weeks of temping - I turned it down)
Arts Administration at a variety of non-profit arts organizations in the area (something I still do)
Director of little ones (K-5) in musicals
Ebay...believe it or not, I have been able to supplement my income a couple times in my life by selling stuff on Ebay
Landscaping for just a couple folks but I do love playing with my hands in the dirt
Massage...I even have a table!
Gambling...I know, I know, inSANE...but I won $5000 on a quarter slot once and was able to pay my bills AND my rent for a couple months.
I know there are some other wild gigs that people have done while struggling in this business - is it all worth it? I think most of us would say, without hesitation...YES! (most of the time)