Does Life Imitate Art? The Answer Is YES.

Does Life Imitate Art? The Answer Is YES.

Let's set the record straight.

"Life imitates art far more than art imitates life"

- Oscar Wilde

Ahhh, the great debate over this fabulous quote by the great author, poet, and playwright Oscar Wilde. This quote has been chewed on by both sides and I'm here to say that I side with Wilde. Life imitates art and it's not the other way around.

From the moment we wake up in the morning, until we're off to bed, life is imitating art. To get into specifics, what I'm saying is that even if we don't realize it, the world is our stage and the ways in which we live embody acting. Here's why:

1. We're all pursuing objectives.

Life is all about making decisions....And owning those decisions. Just like Constantin Stanislavsky proclaimed in the early 20th century: how we make decisions on stage depends on which objectives we're pursuing. So much like acting, life is about finding which action you should play in different situations based on your objectives. This determines your success. When you march up to your boss to demand a raise, you have a handful of options to choose from as far as figuring out what action to play. We ask ourselves: "What do I want?" A raise. "How do I get what I want?" We have options! Do you want to play the pity card? Tell him you're drowning in debt? Or do you march right up to him and demand that raise with all of your force? We all have decisions to make, just like actors on stage, that influence the next move in our lives.

2. Life requires listening.

This is a tough one for people on and off of the stage. Not everyone off of the stage models good listening. Not everyone on stage has it mastered, but those who are on stage know the importance of listening and responding. This is perhaps a lesson that people can learn from actors! Actors know that unless the script dictates otherwise, they must listen to one another. A scene is most interesting when actors are listening and responding to one another. I wish this would cross over into everyday conversations and communication. Can you imagine a world where everyone mindfully listened to one another and responded, rather than talking over each other?! I know, I can't either.

3. We spend most of our time improvising.

How much of life is planned? How often does life go according to plan?! I think you can agree that life has it's own plan, regardless of how tightly we hold and try to control where it goes. The same holds true for acting and performing. I recently had the great experience of stage managing for the first time. The play I was fortunate enough to assist was Michael Frayn's 'Noises Off'. This play, for those of you who don't know, is a complete doozy! Most of the action seems like chaos, especially in the second act. During our rehearsals and run of this production, I caught myself wondering again and again... "Does life imitate art? Or does art imitate life?". You know my answer now. And for the record, we absolutely conquered this 'doozy'. Most of that was because of the cast's willingness to go with the flow, and improvise whenever needed. This can help so much off of the stage especially!

4. We spend some of our time impersonating the people around us.

Have you ever impersonated your boss, a friend, or a professor? Hopefully if you have, it was in good humor and you didn't get caught doing something awful! Some of the best acting can be seen in skits on SNL, like this one. Impersonating is a natural tendency. Tina Fey just happens to be famous and get paid when she does it.

5. Life is like a monologue.

Especially if you're a teacher or spend time orally presenting in some context, this is hard to deny. Telling a story about your weekend, trying to persuade someone to go out on Friday night, talking to yourself; these are all examples of what actors call a 'monologue'.

Like that dead guy Shakespeare once said, "All the world's a stage". Get out there and face the world with the acting skills you've already acclaimed!

Cover Image Credit: Klaus Frahm

Popular Right Now

35 Major Life Facts According To Nick Miller

"All booze is good booze, unless it's weak booze."

Fact: If you watch "New Girl," you love Nick Miller.

You can't help it. He's an adorable, lovable mess of a man and you look forward to seeing him and his shenanigans each week. While living the infamous and incomparable life of Nick Miller, and obviously Julius Pepperwood— he has learned many valuable laws of the land. And, although Nick refuses to learn anything from anyone besides his mysterious, old Asian friend Tran, he does have a few lessons he'd like to teach us.

Here are 35 facts of life according to 'Nick Milla Nick Milla':

1. Drinking keeps you healthy.

"I'm not gonna get sick. No germ can live in a body that is 65% beer."

2. Dinosaurs never existed.

"I don't believe dinosaurs existed. I've seen the science. I don't believe it."

3. A paper bag is a bank.

"A bank is just a paper bag but with fancier walls."

4. Having sex is similar to delivering mail.

"I'm like a mailman, except instead of mail it's hot sex that I deliver."

5. Moonwalking is a foolproof way to get out of any awkward situation.

Jess (about Nick): "Now he won't even talk to me. I saw him this morning and he just panic moonwalked away from me. He does that sometimes."

6. Using a movie reference is also a great way.

Cece: "Come on, get up!"

Nick: "No, I don't dance. I'm from that town in "Footloose."

7. There's no reason to wash towels.

Nick: "I don’t wash the towel. The towel washes me. Who washes a towel?"

Schmidt: "You never wash your towel?"

Nick: "What am I gonna do? Wash the shower next? Wash a bar of soap?"

8. Exes are meant to be avoided at all costs (especially if/unless they're Caroline)

"I don't deal with exes, they're part of the past. You burn them swiftly and you give their ashes to Poseidon."

9. IKEA furniture is not as intimidating as it looks.

"I'm building you the dresser. I love this stuff. It's like high-stakes LEGOs."

10. You don't need forks if you have hands.

Jess: "That's gross. Get a fork, man."

Nick: "I got two perfectly good forks at the end of my arms!"

11. Sex has a very specific definition.

"It's not sex until you put the straw in the coconut."

12. Doors are frustrating.

"I will push if I want to push! Come on! I hate doors!"

13. All booze is good booze.

"Can I get an alcohol?"

14. ...unless it's weak booze.

"Schmidt, that is melon flavored liquor! That is 4-proof! That is safe to drink while you're pregnant!"

15. Writers are like pregnant women.

Jess: "You know what that sound is? It's the sound of an empty uterus."

Nick: "I can top that easily. I'm having a hard time with my zombie novel."

Jess: "Are you really comparing a zombie novel to my ability to create life?"

Nick: "I'm a writer, Jess. We create life."

16. All bets must be honored.

"There is something serious I have to tell you about the future. The name of my first-born child needs to be Reginald VelJohnson. I lost a bet to Schmidt."

17. Adele's voice is like a combination of Fergie and Jesus.

"Adele is amazing."

18. Beyoncé is extremely trustworthy.

"I'd trust Beyoncé with my life. We be all night."

19. Fish, on the other hand, are not.

“Absolutely not. You know I don’t trust fish! They breathe water. That's crazy!"

20. Bar mitzvahs are terrifying.

Schmidt: "It's a bar mitzvah!"

Nick: "I am NOT watching a kid get circumcised!"

21. are blueberries.

Jess: "So far, Nick Miller's list of fears is sharks, tap water, real relationships..."

Nick: "And blueberries."

22. Take your time with difficult decisions. Don't be rash.

Jess: "You care about your burritos more than my children, Nick?"

Nick: "You're putting me in a tough spot!"

23. Getting into shape is not easy.

"I mean, I’m not doing squats or anything. I’m trying to eat less donuts."

24. We aren't meant to talk about our feelings.

"If we needed to talk about feelings, they would be called talkings."

25. We're all a little bit too hard on ourselves.

"The enemy is the inner me."

26. Freezing your underwear is a good way to cool off.

"Trust me, I'm wearing frozen underpants right now and I feel amazing. I'm gonna grab some old underpants and put a pair into the freezer for each of you."

27. Public nudity is normal.

"Everbody has been flashed countless times."

28. Alcohol is a cure-all.

"You treat an outside wound with rubbing alcohol. You treat an inside wound with drinking alcohol."

29. Horses are aliens.

"I believe horses are from outer-space."

30. Turtles should actually be called 'shell-beavers.'

Jess: "He calls turtles 'shell-beavers."

Nick: "Well, that's what they should be called."

31. Trench coats are hot.

"This coat has clean lines and pockets that don't quit, and it has room for your hips. And, when I wear it, I feel hot to trot!"

32. Sparkles are too.

"Now, my final bit of advice, and don't get sensitive on this, but you've got to change that top it's terrible and you've got to throw sparkles on. Sparkles are in. SPARKLES ARE IN."

33. Introspection can lead to a deeper knowing of oneself.

"I'm not convinced I know how to read. I've just memorized a lot of words."

34. It's important to live in the moment.

"I know this isn't gonna end well but the middle part is gonna be awesome."

35. Drinking makes you cooler.

Jess: "Drinking to be cool, Nick? That's not a real thing."

Nick: "That's the only thing in the world I know to be true."

Cover Image Credit: Hollywood Reporter

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Amy Adams Has Been Nominated and Snubbed For Just As Many Awards As Leonardo DiCaprio and Nobody's Talking About It

When will she gain the recognition that she deserves?


Last week on January 7th, the Golden Globes aired on NBC and millions upon millions of viewers were able to see those nominated for recognition of excellence in film and television by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. And with the Golden Globes happening, that means in just about a month the Oscars will air as well.

Although I am pleased and beyond thrilled for every individual who won--because let's be honest here--they all deserved it--I think it is worth mentioning that Amy Adams was once again nominated for an award, but did not win. And when I started to think about the incredible work she did with "Sharp Objects" and how she is nominated for Best Actress for "Vice" in the upcoming Academy Awards, I wondered if she would be overlooked for that as well.

This then got me thinking about how many times Adams was nominated for an Oscar and didn't win.

And wow, it's the same as our good buddy Leonardo Dicaprio. DiCaprio was nominated five times in twenty-two years (his first nomination in 1994 for "What's Eating Gilbert Grape" and his last nomination and award being in 2016 for "The Revenant") and Amy Adams has now been nominated five times in the past thirteen years (her first nomination being in 2005 for "Junebug" and her current nomination for 2018's "Vice").

And unless you didn't have access to any social media in the past five years, you may be aware that there has always been outrage when DiCaprio did not receive an award for his work. It even went so far to be turned into an internet meme that pretty much demanded that he be recognized in the future.

To be fair, DiCaprio and Adams have both won Golden Globe awards, but when it comes to the Oscars, Adams has been nominated five times and has not won. DiCaprio has been nominated for five as well and only won once following years of online circulation about the topic.

So when I look at all the prestigious awards that Adams has been nominated for and her considerable lack of recognition for it, I I begin to wonder why people aren't reacting in a similar fashion. And if people are complaining about it, then why am I not hearing about it all the time like I did with DiCaprio?

And I'm sure people will be quick to say "Well it's about TALENT and Amy Adams has never compelled me to go to the box office, so how could she be robbed of anything?" and to these people I say, you are entirely missing the point.

I think Will Ferrell is an incredibly talented actor and he always compels me to go to the box office, but is he going to receive an Oscar for "Holmes and Watson"? Probably not. It's not about whether you find her talented or not, because to be honest, we all know she is. The fact that she was nominated proves that she is a beyond skilled actress. Talent means different things to different people, but if you're in the film industry, it means that you have it. I'm not saying that Adams is any more talented than anybody else. I'm saying that people don't care about her awards snubs as much as they did about DiCaprio and I'm curious as to why that is.

And whether you think DiCaprio had more iconic characters than Adams did just means that you need to take a closer look at the roles that she has portrayed (and also means that you probably didn't see "American Hustle").

And yes, DiCaprio has been acting for a longer time than Adams has, but I think we should all be aware by now that quantity does not equal quality. She has received just as many, if not more, nominations than he has in a shorter period of time and just because DiCaprio has been in the field for a longer period of time does not entitle him to an Academy Award.

There was a whole movement for DiCaprio to win an Oscar because of the five nominations that he received and I am curious as to why Adams has not received the same passion. I truly do believe that Adams deserves more love and respect for her roles because she is an extremely talented actress and every role that she is in has broken boundaries. Let's hope we see her win her first Academy Award on February 24th on ABC!

Related Content

Facebook Comments