Falling for The Man Who Hardly Breathes: Tsvetanka’s Story

Hi everyone! Damianista welcomes you to a NEW Fan Story Tuesday!

Tsvetanka and I met on Fan Fun Facebook page. And it may be thanks to being from the same part of the world, she grew up in Bulgaria and I grew up in Turkey, that we clicked almost immediately. The two of us have much in common but we have our differences, too: For example, I am way shameless when it comes to asking Damian Lewis for a selfie where as Tsvetanka is extremely thoughtful about not taking his precious time and occupying his personal space… until a certain “enabler” starts to work on her…  I am happy to report Tsvetanka finally took her chance on the last day of The Goat! She was still too shy to ask for a photo but got a lovely autograph! 🙂

source: Tsvetanka

My dear Tsvetanka: I make a personal promise here to take you to stage door myself for a photo with Damian next time he does a play in London. You are a wonderful fan and a wonderful human being that I am extremely happy to call a friend. Thanks so much for sharing your lovely fan story with us. Cheers. 

It all started with Homeland. And how else? : D I have to admit that I would never start watching the show at will because I’m a little bit snobbish. I’m not the biggest fan of mainstream and I hate all these irritating ads for “great hits” and so on. It was just that the TV was on and I just listened to it. The subject caught me right away. I love the thrillers about the CIA and the Middle East. I stared with one eye. I’m not selling myself short 😀 … I immediately fell in love with Carrie and Saul. After a while, I realized that I was actually very impressed with this guy, who is breathing hard through his nose (I have a sinusitis, so I know what it is).

It was actually “who is that man I LOVE the way he hardly breathes?” My first impression was that I LOVED him breathing. This is not a poetic metaphor or so, but a fact I realized then. I remember this very clearly because it was quite odd 🙂 And then who is this man who fills and takes over everything in the scenes with just a look? I said to myself: Wait a minute! Who is the one who says so much only with his eyes? I have not seen such an actor lately. I was impressed how he portrays his character’s faith as a cure for his wounds and a rescue belt in the alien world to which he has returned but to which he no longer belongs.

And as I said in another commentary, from his “Fatiha,” and from his precise attitude to the rituals in this faith, such as the washing, of which Damianista wrote. He must have worked hard to achieve this. Good job! I MUST check WHO he is!

source: Showtime

I wrote in Google Damian Lewis. And (Thank God! 😀 ) then thousands of snapshots, pictures, interviews shoot me… I was impressed how clever and fun he is. At first I had the slight feeling that he is arrogant like most actors, but the more I watched, the more my suspicion was refuted. I binge-watched the series. In a few weeks I watched almost everything in his filmography and dozens of interviews.

It’s hard to say exactly what made me such a big fan. Yes, obviously he is very attractive, talented, very smart (he reminds me of Malcolm from the TV series Malcolm in the Middle. I think he is the grown Malcolm 🙂 ), nice, kind, he has a great sense of humor, he sings incredibly well, his voice is extraordinarily good <3 . Dream-boy in one word. I’m not going to tell you how much I like him in “Brides” – maybe my favorite romantic movie, or how I can listen to his “Leaning on a lamppost” again and again…

Damianista’s note: Sorry for jumping in but here is Damian singing “Leaning on a lamppost” for you all to enjoy!

Imagine me pinching my head in the bed, like Sarah Parish’s heroine in “Shakespeare Re-Told – Much Ado About Nothing” after reciting Shakespeare’s Sonnet 116: D

I will deal with two key-things I was fascinated by, both as a person and as an actor (although one can not be separated from the other). One is Keane. “Have you watched Keane?!!!!!!!!!!!!” (I want to shout loud at all the film critics and people who are interested in cinema and acting.) I have no words to explain my impressions of his acting in Bulgarian nether in English. So pure and brilliant performance, drawing a man with mental problems so far I have not seen.

It is interesting for me since I was a child to observe people whom society describes as “crazy”. Damian is really impressive in this role. It is literally suffocating to be a witness of his pain and anxiety. It seems as if he has no vanity at all, which as he himself admits, is not true. What kind of empathy do you have to feel about your character to recreate his torments in this way? I watched the movie many times and still can not believe what I saw!

The other thing is his answer “heavens” (you can use this as the lead title of my story ) It is from the “5-minutes” interview, and more precisely the moment when the host asked him about non- sporting interests.

Damian’s spontaneous response just broke me. He shot rapidly ” uuuh, uuuh, HEAVENS” !!! What a romantic man and an idealist! This guy turned him upside down from the football (snooker) theme, and we know what an avid fan “our man” is. In psycholinguistics, such responses and associations are very indicative for the constitution of a person. “HEAVENS”!!!!!!! Gotta love him!

Well, that’s all. Thank God my English is not enough to write a tenth of what I want, so I will not bore you to death. : D

Author: Damianista

Academic, Traveler, Blogger, Runner, Theatre Lover, Wine Snob, Part-time New Yorker, and Walking Damian Lewis Encyclopedia :D Procrastinated about a fan's diary on Damian Lewis for a while and the rest is history!

12 thoughts on “Falling for The Man Who Hardly Breathes: Tsvetanka’s Story”

  1. Hallo Damianista, hallo Tsvetanka,
    die Idee mit den Fangeschichten ist einfach grandios. Ich liebe diese wahren Geschichten, die das Leben schreiben kann. Es ist unglaublich, in welchen Worten und Arten man diesen Mann beschreiben kann. Und wie immer, stimme ich in allen Punkten zu 100% zu. Ich bin wieder mal total begeistert und freue mich, dass es so viele “HautundHaar-Fan`s” gibt.
    Mach Dir bitte wegen meiner Geschichte keinen Stress. Ich liebe es, den Weg aller anderen Fans zu erfahren. Man glaubt es kaum, welche Ähnlichkeiten da zu Tage treten.
    Liebe Tsvetanka, Deine Art und Weise, „IHN“ zu beschreiben, hat mich sehr berührt.
    Herzlichste Grüße aus Deutschland !


    “Hello Damianista, Hello Tsvetanka,
    the idea with the catching layers is simply terrific. I love these true stories that life can write. It is unbelievable in which words and ways one can describe this man. And as always, I agree to 100% on all points. I am once again totally excited and am glad that there are so many “skin and hair fan”.
    Please do not worry about my story. I love to know the way of all the other fans. It is scarcely believed which similarities occur.
    Dear Tsvetanka, Your way to describe “HIM” has touched me very much.
    Greetings from Germany!”

    1. Thank you so much, dear Lucky Fellow! I think it’s not just a coincidence that everyone has the same impressions of Damian. If I have correctly understood the meaning of “Skin and Hair Fan” as a truly devoted fan, then it’s all Damian’s fault. Because it is undoubted that as truly talented and capable in his profession he is, as truly wonderful as a man hе is. It’s plenty of “stars” out there which are unfortunately nothing more than a glossy wrapped product of the entertainment industry. And they all acting and behave like absurd clonings of some fake PR-model, which is ridiculous. But not Damian. He is a real treasure.
      Much love to you! <3

  2. Tsvetanka, I so enjoy your story! Isn’t it fun to be in the company of people who also notice how Damian breathes, and walks and his particular stance? Of course all of that would be nothing without his spectacular gifts. Keane is a remarkable performance. I really need to buy that DVD and watch again. I fell in love with Brody but really I appreciate the work Damian did in that character more now that I’ve seen him become other characters. Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. Hi, Notlinda! It’s REALLY FUN to be in such a company! Just as you mentioned it, it reminded me of the Indian fable about the Blind Men and the Elephant. 😀 It will be something like: he is hardly breathing … he has a swagger walk … he has a sweet voice with a hint of Cabernet … he’s articulate beyond belief … he’s our ginger prince … ( has anyone mentioned something about his eyes?) and sooo on… Isn’t it incredible! 🙂
      I would describe him with a quote from a great poem: “…yea, he is altogether lovely.” <3
      I'm not only for Keane. I LOVE Brody, I LOVE his Henry, I love Balor. He is very talented and he had his great moments in almost every role he played as far as the script allowed him to do that. Keane is a kind of mono-spectacle, and the screenplay and the shooting mode, and everything else let us see how damn good he is.

  3. HEAVENS!!!! What a wonderful, heartfelt, honest account of how you became a Damian fan! Thank you so much, my friend, for sharing your fan story with us. I completely understand how you fell for and (maybe felt for) the man who could hardly breathe because my husband has a similar problem… it is hard for people, like me, who can breathe freely, to understand how hard it is for them to breathe… And the only conclusion I can arrive, based on my household experience, is that Damian may have a snoring problem 😀

    I so agree with you that we have to shout at the top of our lungs to ask everyone if they have seen Keane! What an amazing and equally under-appreciated movie (sharing the fate of many equally good indie movies, of course. Therefore, I completely understand you being snobbish about mainstream — can you even imagine Alex Gansa and Howard Gordon had not seen Keane? You may laugh at me, but basically, it would have been a different universe now. I wonder what I would have been doing now :)))))

    II hope Damian will do another play in London sooner than later and not just because I want to see him on stage again, I really DO, but it would be a TRUE pleasure to see the play with you, sitting next to you, and exchange notes afterwards <3 Thanks for all your support, your kind words, and your friendship. Here's to sharing Damian Lewis love for many, many, MANY years together!

    1. My dear Damianista, I’m really, really lucky to have you as a friend too! And there are many reasons for this:

      You are a wonderful human being. I won’t forget that June morning when I was crushed and desperate (as probably most people were at some point) and your message “accidentally” appeared on my phone “Hi, I am Damianista, can I send you a friend invitation? ” For a second I thought to myself: What? That intelligent, witty, funny and charming girl, who is incidentally a professor, wants to be my friend?! Whatta … !!! Then I hurriedly ignored all this and mourned to you my anguish like a baby. So you wrote me a few words and change many things. There are no coincidences in life. 🙂 The fact that you managed to give me hope is understandable, anyone who has seen your broad, radiant smile even on a picture can confirm this. But how you made half of my rooms turn into DND so I could go to the stage door and see that… most charming human being in the world an inch in front of me, I’m still wondering. <3

      You are an amazing blogger. I bet every artist would dream of a blog like this about him/her, but only Damian is the lucky one. And I was over the moon when he said “Thank” to you. I wonder if Kevin Costner knows what a huge loss he had in that "EMMA" award evening.

      You are a great teacher too. I have never attended your classes, but I’m sure about this and will tell you why. My mother and my aunt are teachers. I grew up in the teacher's offices, in this environment, you know – where everyone behaves patronizingly and instructively (not my mother). I always had this incredible luck to meet the best teachers from primary school to university. None of these people managed to make me love writing. I just hate writing. Even my favorite professor, of whom I’m terribly respected, and whom I adore, and who is probably the smartest man I’ve ever met, failed to persuade me to write my coursework. But because of you in the last two or three months, I wrote more words than through all the years of my studying. 😀 So cheers for “the tutor”!!

      Thank you for your promise! I truly hope to see him together on stage sooner than in two or three years. Because (you already know that) to be delighted with his live presence on the stage is like a drug 🙂 I believe that this intoxicating magic is mutual and the more actors give their passion and energy – the more the audience returns it back to them. So I hope Damian is already experiencing these symptoms of “abstinence” and he is already looking for a new project.
      THANK YOU, MY DEAR! MANY HUGS <3 <3 <3

      PS Shush, quiet about snoring problems, I thought that too 😀

      1. I thought you liked me, girl, but you have made me cry!!!! THANK YOU, you are such a wonderful human being, I just cannot thank you enough for your extremely kind words about me and the blog. If I was able to help you a little when you were down, then I could not be happier. What else are friends for? You call Damian the lucky one, Lewisto sometimes calls him ‘lucky bastard’ 😀

        Fun trivia: Kevin won an Emmy that night, too, for his role in a mini-series called Hatfield and McCoys, saw it, he was really good in it. But Kevin has always been good in westerns, he is so passionate about telling the story of America. Having said that, sorry, buddy, it is too late 😀 😀 😀

        This tutor does not understand enough and she would love you to write more — and for the blog, too, whenever you feel like it. I am eyeing your post about Brides! 🙂

        I think all these reason you mention come together and make Damian return to stage again and again. He makes more than enough money on TV, he does not need to do stage, it is not worth it money wise, but we all know this is not about money. It is what he WANTS to do, I think, he loves especially the physicality of it and how one shares a live performance with the audience in an intimate setting. Oh I can go on and on about this for hours. But, yes, it is a date! <3

        PS Shush indeed 😀 😀 😀

    1. Thank YOU for making our day! Giving our readers a smile is our true mission and we cannot be happier if mission is accomplished <3

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