Looking Back Through ’11 (Part 4)


Tom and Jery

At the end of September, my BFF Tom moved back to the East Coast.  I had a hard time dealing with it through the rest of the month.  I was crying on the way home from dropping him off at the airport.  It wasn’t the bawling, I-can’t-control-my-car kind.  It was more like the angry if-I-could-stop-my-eyes-from-watering-so-you-don’t-get-the-satisfaction-of-seeing-me-cry-I-would kind.  I held on to that sadness and even now, still can’t see a blue mini cooper without him popping in my brain.  But with the show to distract me and my favorite holiday, I began to deal with his choice.

My favorite scary movie!!! Along with Poltergeist and The Exorcist.

October, my favorite month!  That’s usually when all the fun scary stuff happens, like haunted houses and scary movies.  And of course, there’s Halloween.  I love the thrill of getting scared.  It’s kind of exhilarating.  I don’t dress up for Halloween anymore.  I haven’t in years!  I think I’ve only dressed up for costume parties.  And even then, not often.   I think I associate the holiday with the cooling of the weather and the crunching of leaves under my feet.  I find that sound really soothing when I am out walking in the day.  At night, it’s a little like “Shut up!! People are gonna know where I am at!”  It’s kind of sad that I always assume the worst about people when I am walking about at night.   I think the getting mugged really took a lot of that adventurousness that I had when I was a teenager.

Oh, speaking of scary movies: Paranormal Activity 3 came out…and it sucked!! I think I may have jumped once.  The big ending that was supposed to “mess you up for life” (yeah, the commercials really said that) was LAME!!!!  So lame that merely typing it in caps and making bold wasn’t enough.  It needed to be italicized too!  If you were scared by that, I would be shocked.  I am the biggest chicken and I really wanted to just scream “are you frakin’ kiddin’ me?!”  I regret going to see this movie.

The Purple Gang. And we are SO hard core! So watch it!

Due to the rash of children committing suicide, October became the National Stop Bullying Month.  Yay!! It’s hard enough just to walk with your head high for who you are without having people making you feel less than.  The 20th was designated as the month to wear purple as a show of solidarity that you are against bullying.  Thankfully, I wasn’t alone in that belief.

I went to a cool conference that was all about figuring out ways to bring the theatrical experience to the audience in different ways.  It was enlightening and supremely informative.  The only downside is that I don’t really have a place to test these ideas out.  Also, figuring out the logistics of them would be a pain in the ass as well.  I regret that I didn’t get that much audio to make a podcast for it.  But I even more regret paying $37 for parking for 5 hours in San Francisco!

The Occupy Movement grew from just Occupy Wall Street into a much bigger force to be reckoned with!  Which is good because, this whole gap between the have and have-nots only seem to keep growing and growing.  It’s no wonder that all, yes ALL, politicians aren’t in the loop when it comes to what the people really want.  Have you noticed that they all promise everything just to get into office and fail to deliver.  They got what they wanted, why bother with the rest?


Ending of H2$

November marked the opening of H2$ and it’s run began.  So many smiles and happy times with that fabulous cast.  I love them all.  Hot stuff!  I’ve heard nothing but good things from the people leaving the auditorium, and read an accurate middle of the road review of the show, but the tickets sales were a bit on the lacking side.  I even got to have my first TheActorvist.com contest for free tickets, and got about a hundred hits on that post but only one entry!  I don’t know if maybe the show wasn’t something people weren’t interested in seeing or if the prices were too high or if people thought it was a bad show.  While the sales were disappointing, it was fun. And as much time as I had the chance to spend with them, I regret that I didn’t spend more.  Oh, and I regret that my Podcast isn’t working.  It featured a pretty good interview with Brett Carlson.

Aside from the show, the month was slow.  Thanksgiving was uneventful, but pleasant.


Hong Kong's Times Square. Do you see what the hearts are saying?

Which brings us to December!  It’s currently 4:45 on the last day of the year.  People are already starting 2012 and the East Coast begins it’s countdown in about 4 hours. Looking back at this month, there were only two things significant about it.

The first is that we closed out H2$ with a bang!  While perfection was never achieved like I so wanted, the attempt, I feel, only made my enjoyment of the show that much greater.

The second thing that happened was our 3rd annual Pajama/Donut/Game Day!  Again a very pleasant success.  Basically my friends and I hangout in our pj’s the entire day, doing nothing but having a good time and allowing our childish indulgences come forth.  It’s basically our version of Disneyland.  With this being our third year, I wonder if we have to now add a new element to it next year.  No, no, that’s like a 5th anniversary thing.  Nevermind.

SO, that was my year.  Not very exciting and filled with regrets.  But there were a lot of lessons learnt as well.

I look forward to 2012 and possibly the end of time with optimism and hope that people will change.  That the good of very soul will step forth and show itself to everyone else and the world will become a much better place to live.

Thank you all for being a part of my life and I look forward to hearing from you and seeing you in 2012!

All the world’s a stage.  Now get out there and Break A Leg!

Looking Back Through ’11 (Part 3)



I cannot believe that I forgot the most important event of the year.  Ugh!  Sometimes, I wonder how I survive!

Sadly, in early March, an earthquake created a devastating tsunami that affected a large part of Japan, and essentially the world.  I say the world, because of the Fukishima nuclear power plant that was damaged in this event.  There was a meltdown, and at this point in time, it’s no longer news here in the U.S.  In just a few months, there has been amazing progress made and if you want to see what I mean, check out these pictures on Totally Cool Pix.  In regards, to the triple meltdown, about 2 weeks ago, the plant has reached “cold shutdown ‘conditions'”.  According to the Canadian Press “A cold shutdown normally means a nuclear reactor’s coolant system is at atmospheric pressure and the its reactor core is at a temperature below 100 C, making it impossible for a chain reaction to take place.” So now that things have cooled enough, the work to actually shut the plant down  will begin.  This is still expected to take 30+ years to reach complete decommission of the plant.  Interesting side note: The government also says the amount of radiation now being released around the plant is at or below 1 millisievert per year — equivalent to the annual legal exposure limit for ordinary citizens before the crisis began. – Canadian News.

Thousands of people perished and thousands more displaced, and yet, they are rebuilding their homes and country quicker than the U.S.’s involvement with the Katrina Fallout still!  Remarkable for them and sad for us.


July was a mess of things, ideas gone astray, cool events, and a lot of nursery stuff.

I don't remember the name or the Artist of this piece. I apologize, but if you know I would love to give credit!

I finally got to drag myself down to the art walk which was the ONLY time this year that I was able to go!  I was really really bummed.  In 2012, unless I have a show, I plan on going to them each month.  I know Campell has the same thing happening as well, so I may switch off between the two, because sometimes, the museums still have the same stuff up from the last walk.  That was one of the coolest pieces of this particular event for me.

At work, they asked me to step into the role of a social media admin which is all well and good.  I don’t mind it at all, but when I have to spend more than a little time finding something cool on the web or in the nursery, I am rushed.  You know how when you are looking for something interesting, it takes a while to find a blog or article that captures what you want, be it information, gift ideas, or useful tips.  For a business, you have to be sure the content is factual and non-offensive.  But because we are always looking for “the most efficient way,” there is always the question, “How long do you think it will take?”   It’s hard to want to peruse for cool stuff, when there’s that little voice in your head saying “Hurry up, hurry up, hurry up!”  I found out that in another nursery with a successful social media campaign the admin who works 4o hours a week is alloted 20 hours to just focus on this kind of thing.  Half their shift and they have a very successful campaign.  Just sayin’.

Charles Ross came to town with his frakin’ awesome One Man Star Wars Show!!  THAT was awesome!!!  I geeked out over how much fun and just clever this was.  If you get the chance to see him perform, DO IT!!  This is the show you are looking for.  *Waves hand over your face*  Yeah, I Jedi Mind Tricked ya!  I regret that he can’t perform his one man LOTR!  That is something I would love to see!  Check out his videos!

I got to perform in my first ever Flashmob!  There were so few of us that it was like a Flashbunch?   It was fun, very quick and virtually painless.  Looking back on the video, that’s where the pain is.  hahahaha!  And no, I am not showing it again.  If you missed it, it’s in the blog…somewhere.

Oh, yeah, and I celebrated another birthday with the revelation: that I really need to get a move on this whole acting shindig.  I am wasting WAAAAAYYY too much time just thinking about it.


August was bitter/sweet.  Bitter because I learned that I have to really fight to get what I am supposed to get.  I am speaking of the contract that fell through.  I just guessed that when people talk of the industry being cut throat, I was expecting that of actors and not so much of the board of directors and all that junk.  But I have learned from the experience, so I can’t say it was a total waste.  That was a tough lesson to learn though.

What was really sweet was that I got to attend a seminar that is designed to help you break past the barriers that you are putting up around yourself.  And I learned SO much from that.  So I began relearning things that I “knew” about theatre and hopefully will be able to find it useful in creating future opportunities and abilities for myself.  It’s exciting.  In a way, it’s like I am rediscovering theatre.  I love it.

And that’s all for August.


September brought us the 10th Anniversary of the 9.11 attacks on the WTC.  Something that riled up the country enough to allow us to go to war without finding out all the facts and helped to put us into the financial crisis we as a nation are in today!  Considering that hundreds of billions of dollars are  put into this useless war for oil that could have been used to revitalize our country’s economy (well, I guess it probably wouldn’t have gotten this bad.) it’s a wonder our debt is so high and still climbing.  The Republicans are trying to pin all of this on Obama in an attempt to take back the presidency, and with their constant in your face assault on the pubic  with it all over tv, I wouldn’t be surprised if it happens.  I just want to point out that it was the Republicans in the Oval Office for 8 of the 10 years we have been in this predicament.  A fact that they conveniently overlook.

Some old and new favorite people: Top Row: Adam Weinstein, Lea Simon, Karl Schweitzer Bottom Row: Cindy Powell and Melissa Weinstein

Aside from that, only one thing happened for me in September that was significant.  I began to work on my next project, How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying.  Gawd, they couldn’t come up with a longer title than that?  I got to work with some old favorites and meet some new people who quickly became faves!  H2$ took up so much time that I really didn’t have any time for anything else.  And I didn’t mind it a single bit!

That was my Q3.

How did you do?  Did you do anything that you really enjoyed? With only a few hours before 2012, did you regret anything in your Q3?

Dear H2$ Cast Mates…

Photo created and taken by E. Kwong of Imagewurx

Dear H2$ Cast Mates,

Now that I have a free moment, I’d like to say… Benjamin Burton Daniel Ovington?!


I know it’s going to sound unbelievably unoriginal and uninspired, but I have thoroughly enjoyed working along side each and every one of you.  I’ve only been in one show where I’ve laughed as much as I have in this one, so I cannot thank you enough for the tremendous hilarity you have infused the entire rehearsal process and production run with.  I actually looked forward to rehearsals, a little less so when it was hot outside.  But still, I looked forward to seeing all of you wonderful people.  That’s why every night when I left, I said “goodbye all you wonderful, beautiful people.”  For you truly are.  There’s a small part of me that is a little sad that I won’t be seeing you all this coming weekend.

Now, while the previous words weren’t super original, please know that they are extremely heartfelt.  I do however want to tell you the following:

Andrea – I have absolutely loved watching you on stage.  Your commitment to your character choices is always 100% and makes me want to be that focused.  I still want to do a project that features you!  I don’t know what, but just a head’s up!

Brett – You have brought jack-assery (that’s a Brett Carlson term) to another level.  There were subtleties in your performance that were genius and I take my hat off to you sir! It’s been an honor sharing the stage with you once more.

Sean – Thank you for being stuck with me once more and allowing me to interact with you.  It’s always a riot when you come up with an unexpected remark.  Enjoy your break, but don’t stay off-stage too long.

Greg – You, sir were so well prepared and only because you told me, I would never have guessed that this is only one in a small handful of performances.  I look forward to some good things from you. Thanks for the laughs!

John – It was a pleasure sharing the stage with you. You have great energy and your so charming on stage!  Keep up the good work!

Doug – It was great to do another show with you.  I loved the new energy you brought to Act 2 every night.  I hope it’s not another 6 years before we share the stage again.

Mike – This show, I’m sure, will have specific memories tied to it.  For me, your incredible heart and friendship and kindness will be something that will always be thought of when I think of H2$.

Roberta – Gurl, you are all kinds of fierce.  Your calmness always helped me focus right before we had to go on stage.  I love that you also delve into your character’s past and see what you can use.  It’s inspiring.

Stephanie – I really only got to watch you dance during Yo-Ho-Ho, and every time, you were fabulous in it! Those doubles! Bam! Every time.  You are without question one of the nicest people I have the privilege of knowing.

Kim – You have some of the best reactionary expressions in the show! So much fun to watch you each show during Cinderella Darling (I was all stalkery and watching from the lobby)

Elizabeth – You took funny to a whole other level! I could see you doing very well in a stand up comic situation.  You have a wonderful way of telling stories and finding the funny in them.  You definitely were one of the wickedly funny people in the cast.  Your drawings were adorable, and I will always remember the humpy camel.

Lydia – FLAWLESS!! You brainy chica! Your interpretation of Hedy was brilliant! Nuff said!

Ronnie – I feel so lucky to have had this opportunity to work with you.  You humor was completely unexpected but totally gut busting!  I am forever going to think of you as a closeted smarmy fella!

Cindy – I am shocked that you haven’t done more musicals!  You’ve got such a great voice!  So sultry, or should I say slinky?! You are an absolute joy!

Sven – I am in awe of how dedicated you practiced the Chipmunk Cheer every night.  Your applause were honestly well deserved!  Chip-Chip-Chip-Chip-Chipmunk!  Hmph! Keep up the great work!

Karl – You are so devilishly funny!  I love how much thought you put into your character.  My favorite moment is when you leave the stage after “Coffee Break.”  I am SO glad you are back in theatre, you’re so natural there.

Frank – Once again, you are a delight to work with.  You’re always such a consistent actor, and it’s a great comfort to work with someone so dependable.

Lea – Diva, my diva!  You have THE best expression the first time we see Hedy! I love that you always have strong characters.  Even, if they aren’t written as such. You always give them an immense dignity that makes your characters so likable.

Chris – Another fabulous job.  You’re song was always one that I really enjoyed watching from the wings.  You’ll have to keep me posted on your next show.

April – Hello, Ms. Fabulous!  Getting to know you and to perform with you was an absolute joy!  My regret is that we didn’t get to gabbing sooner in the rehearsal process.

Samantha – Gurl, I love you!  I just think the world of you.  Your work at the conservatory is super evident.  Every night, I loved watching you storm out angry then change your tactic and rush back in 5 seconds later.  So incredible to see that transformation backstage.

Robert – Davis!!  You were a rock, solid! Thank you for all your help when I missed stuff! It’s been a honor to work with you again.  I can’t remember how long it’s been since the last show, but it better not happen again!

Jeff – To my “Fraternity” brother, it was a blast dancing with you.  Thank you for your help during the set up of Act 2 scene 4, I appreciate it.

Melissa – Okay, you were the one I was not expecting to hear such wicked yet frackin’ funny things from.  Not only that, you are so quick with the funny!  I wanna be able to sing like you when I grow up.  Such a fabulous voice.  I am going to miss helping you down from a table.

Jen – You are a wonderful dance partner.  Thanks for trusting that I wouldn’t drop you! Thank you for helping me figure out all the things that I missed during “Coffee Break” due to work.  Also thanks, for the info on how to help my shoulder.

All of you have a place in my heart, and I would happily work with any and all of you again anytime!  I wish you all nothing but the best in your future endeavors and incredible success in 2012!!

I love you and cannot thank you enough for the laughs and the wonderful memories and friendships that you’ve shared with me over the last 3 months.

All my best,



Argh! One weekend left and the pursuit of perfection is still on!

This afternoon after leaving Yamagami’s Nursery, I hopped in the car and set out for the theatre and this afternoon’s matinee.  But as I was heading southbound on Hwy 85, I began to feel sluggish and a case of the “boy am I tired’s” hit me like a ton of bricks.  My body was sore from the Zohar rehearsal for the winter showcase and from the week off of the show, and from my gym workout after a 3 week break on Saturday.

But sure enough, as I get into place for the opening of the show, the lovely Roberta gives me a pep talk and I am raring to go.  And go we did.  Weeeellllllll, until after my first exit. Hahahaha.  When I come back on stage with Finch, we totally forgot what it was that I was supposed to say. Actually let me rephrase that.  I knew the line, but it always trips me up because the way that it’s written.  It’s written as “My secretary will take care of the forms and getting your particulars.”  For me, I feel like saying “My secretary will take care of getting the forms and your particulars.”  It’s that one little word: getting.  And what came out of my mouth was “My secretary will uuuhhhhhhhhhhhhhh…..getting your particulars and filling out the forms.”  I swear that “uh” felt like the longest moment in the world!

Then I began to joke and say that I would make it a character choice and go on the rest of the show and use that randomly throughout.  Like, “Well, uuuuuuuhhhhhhhh, this is something.”  Or better yet, as I am singing: “A secretary is not uuuuuuuuuuhhhhhh a toy.”

Just be sure that the “uh” sound like and old dry wooden door opening.  Had to make sure you had that imagery in there for ya.

Other than that, the only other thing that I can knit pick is that I was early during that same dance break that I rolled my ankle on last night.

The audience was small but mighty!  People came out in to the lobby in such high spirits it was wonderful to see and the hear how much they enjoyed themselves.  I am so happy, but with that in mind, we have to get the word out about this show to have our last two performances sold out.  So if you would be so kind and please write a review of the show on Artsopolis, I can’t tell you how much all of us in the H2$ family would appreciate it.  After today’s performance, I got to meet a number of wonderful people who did happen to enjoy themselves so a special shout out to Bijou and Bo.  A lovely young duo how were very knowledgeable about theatre and all the little things that we accomplished that some people may have missed.

If you haven’t been able to make it out to the show, I would personally like to invite you to come out and watch the show.  Also, let me know if you are coming so I can be sure to look for you after and thank you personally.   I hope to see you there on Friday on better yet, closing night!

Baby, Baby, I got the feelin’…

James Brown’s music has always made me want to dance.  It’s infused with this energy that just fills every cell in me and either I have to sing or dance.  But I gotta do SOMETHING!

Similar to the energy of the late, great James Brown’s music, is that of the cast of How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying, hereafter to be referred to as H2$, okay?  That title is just too long to keep typing.

There is a lot of talent in this cast, and I for one am very lucky to be a part of it.  Everyone is nice and has a sense of humor.  I haven’t come across anyone that isn’t having fun.  Our J. Pierrepont Finch, played by the mischievous John Eubank is a perfect blend of smarmy and charming.  They make me want to dance and sing too!  If there were enough people, I would say that my character definitely wouldn’t dance.

So as I am building my character and looking through the script, I find that I want to create a super ridiculous backstory for Bert Bratt.  I have a ton of ideas, and I am always reading about playing the stakes at the highest point you can, but I am beginning to wonder to myself if they are too over the top.  I’m sure if they are, our director will say I need to chill.

The look of the character is a whole other beast that is developing.  I am trying to figure out how to get the “look” that the staff of the show are going with, but my idea is a bit extreme when it comes to the hair.  The producer wants this:

Which I love, but my hair doesn’t do that.  It just physically doesn’t do it.  Also, no gel that I have ever found has the cement hold I would need to maintain a well groomed look after dancing what our choreographer says will be our deaths.  I believe her words were: “You are gonna die.”   So in order to get that tight to the scalp look on the sides like the picture above, I offered this:

The sides and back are shaved very close to the scalp.  Now, I know that the shaved look isn’t appropriate, but after a week or so, the hair will fill in and be dark enough so that you can’t tell that it’s shaved until you are close up.  Sadly, my producer swears that he can get my hair to work, even though I know after YEARS of trying to do it, I can’t.  But, he’s shut that idea down.

I know the stylist on Mad Men uses American Crew products, but I’ve tried that and there is no way that it’ll hold after a single dance step.  Let’s see Garnier is out.  Bed Head holds well, but once you start sweating, there’s trouble.  D:Fi is good but once you break the style by taking off a hat, for example, you have to reapply to readjust the misplaced hair.   Short Sexy Hair is great for creating a spiky look, but it flakes and breaks easily.  LA Looks, yeah, I am going WAAAYYYY back.  No strong enough at all.  Do they even still make that stuff?  My sister once got my hair to stay for about 20 minutes. Once.  She used her LA Looks gel, some mousse from a white can and a ton of Aqua Net.  20 minutes for all of that.  Sad days my friends, sad days.

I am toying with the idea of glasses as well.  Since I have to be clean shaven, I will look all of 20 or so.   How does a 20 something become the head of the Personnel department of a giant corporation that quickly?  Hopefully, I can find some mature looking ones that help and not hurt my case.

Have you found a gel that can withstand a hurricane?  Please let me know, cuz I’ve tried a ton of stuff to no avail, as you can see.  Suggestions are highly encouraged.  Does your hair not do what you tell it to?  Let’s share stories. Leave a comment below.

Have a great day!!