working with the end in mind

Actor James Gammon (photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures)

Which end?

THE end.

The thought was brought to the fore when I was reading the New York Times obit of actor James Gammon.

Clearly a talented performer what caught my eye was the end of the story when actor and writer Sam Shepard said:

“This was a guy who could act circles around most other actors,” Mr. Shepard said, “and he never pretended to be other than a working kind of actor.”

When “The Late Henry Moss” was first produced at the Magic Theater in San Francisco in 2000, he recalled, it had a starry cast that included Sean Penn, Woody Harrelson, Nick Nolte and Cheech Marin.

“I mean, a bunch of notoriously famous guys,” Mr. Shepard said. “And every single one of them would come up to me, alone, and say, ‘Who’s that Jim Gammon guy? Where did he come from?’ “

How is your work and your work ethic viewed by those around you now?

What will be the legacy of your work in the mind of others?

It’s not your primary goal of course (performing, working, paying bills are more immediate concerns) but it does give one pause to reflect.

Now is the time that you are/can shape that legacy.

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