I had saved a lot of money working at Mrs. Fields' Chocolate Chip Cookies, ushering at the Golden Gate Theatre, and doing odd jobs so I could live in New York for a few months. If it ran out, I would have to give up and go home. It turned out OK. I got my Equity card and started working.
I have a fear of labels. If someone labels me, I have to respond - do I acknowledge it, reject it, deny it, live up to it, and defy it? Labels can affect your ability to be yourself. If you're not careful, like I wasn't when I was young, that can take a toll on you. You find yourself conforming to everyone else's ideas of who you are.
The success of the storytellers - we're only as good as what we can withhold from the audience. Aspects of surprise and letting things play out for the audience - it's so much a part of their enjoyment. It's one of the great things about working in the movies and being a great storyteller.
Usually, when you are an ethnic person or a trans person, in your average, everyday, unsophisticated television show, you are there for that reason. And they clearly justify and overexplain why. You very rarely see a transgender actor playing the part of a grocery-store clerk without having to say, 'Oh, look at that trans person.'