by The Bathtub Project
Date of Interview: September 22, 2016
Name: Matt Ingram
Location: Washington, DC
If you were an underwater creature which one would you be?
I saw that you ask this a lot and tried not to think about it too much… What is that joke that dolphins are really just gay sharks? What is that from? I’m compelled to say a dolphin because they are beautiful and smart and don’t they have echolocation or something? I feel like that is something I would want, something kind of like a super power. To be a super power among a bunch of sea creatures would be pretty cool. I’m doing a quick inventory of all the sea creatures I can think of to make sure that dolphin is the correct selection. Ummm… I’m gonna go with dolphin. And they can jump out of the water! That looks really fun! And they can squirt shit out of their hole… their blowhole. Definitely dolphin.
When you were a little kid, what did you want to be?
A lot of things. I remember distinctly in kindergarten wanting to be a… so some of the first music I was exposed to as a kid was boy band pop music, who knows maybe that’s why I’m a homosexual, but I remember just thinking that the Backstreet Boys and NSync were extremely cool and so I really wanted to be that. I’m clearly very close to achieving that dream now. Yeah, so I wanted to do that and then for a long time I wanted to be a film actor, then a stage actor, then I got pretty content being creative in any capacity that I could be in.
Does recognition matter to you?
Yeah, I think it does. More than I would like it to. Yeah, it does sometimes and I think that I try to tell myself and to remind myself that it’s not everything and personal goals are more important than meeting the standards that I’ve decided that other people have. But, yes, yes it does matter to me. I just try to be conscious of how much.
What are you passionate about?
I think that’s a question that has made me fraught for most of my life. Or for at least recent years because I haven’t really been able to pinpoint something and that’s been pretty frustrating. But when I think about where I derive good feelings from, like what gives me joy, I don’t necessarily have a specific thing that I can share. Like, an activity, there are activities that I like but it’s hard for me to say. Most people would say ‘music’ or ‘art’, like people who hold themselves to their art or their ‘thing’ and for me I would say that my thing is like, moments. Good moments. Things that give me joy are fleeting, moments that aren’t long lasting. So anything that can make a good moment. That’s what I would say I’m passionate about.
What are your thoughts on relationships? Platonic, sexual or otherwise.
Well I think that playing into the moment thing, all that we have, I mean, okay so… there are these movies by this guy Richard Linklater, he made a movie called Boyhood which you might be familiar with, but he also made these movies- a trilogy. The first one is called Before Sunrise, the second one is Before Sunset and the third one is called Before Midnight. These movies follow this couple over the course of their relationship and the movies were made in nine year intervals. So ’95, 2004 and 2013 and every movie is kind of a snapshot of the couple at that point in the relationship. My point is that there is a line that the woman, it’s of a heterosexual relationship, says to the man which is that she, she’s talking about how, I’m probably going to fuck this up because I can’t remember it all, but she’s talking about God. She says something like “I think that God is the magic that exists between two people”. They have this very romantic night, this chance encounter and she says that she thinks it’s God- them being together, the magic that exists between two people. And so, yeah. That’s what I think of relationships, they’re fleeting, some last for forever, some last for a second and you don’t know which are which. And that’s really stressful sometimes, but I think they’re vital.
Have you been in love?
I don’t know. Next question. Maybe, but, not now. ::laughs:: I mean, maybe, yeah, I’ve been in love with a slice of pizza before.
What do you feel is your biggest accomplishment?
I’m bad at this thing like thinking of my superlatives on the spot. I think that I feel similarly, well I don’t want to call you out in my interview but, I feel like it would be really lame to try to go through the history of my life and hoping to find something because I’ve never thought of that, like quantified that. But my biggest accomplishment is that since high school or since I’ve realized that you can feel self conscious, I’ve worked through that as much as I possibly can. I feel like I’m still self conscious in the ways that matter to everyday life, but my real answer is that I have gotten to know myself well enough that even though it can still hold me back sometimes, I can acknowledge those parts. I think my biggest accomplishment is growth in the way that I can talk to myself. I can talk to myself and get over things that before, would have been debilitating. I’ve grown to understand it. You’re state of mind changes, sometimes it’s good and sometimes it’s bad. The thing I’m proudest of is recognizing that and being able to tell myself that and knowing that I can talk myself through it. The clarity to say to myself when something good is happening- this is good and enjoy it.