September 9, 2020

Hi, not sure if ANYONE actually follows or reads these posts but if you do you MAY have noticed a definite STOP of posts from me.

To be honest, and what I have sadly come to realize I may not be good enough, have enough talent, ‘skill’, look, ‘personality’ or what-have-you to succeed, that can actually make a living – personally (make friends in The Biz) and enough financially, as an actor.

I have been at this for over five years, have attended numerous Casting Director (CD) workshops,  taken various acting classes (& most classes never really understood how the ‘teacher‘ or ‘experienced professional‘ handled their class and was disillusioned very quickly thinking their offering is not to help actors and seems only for the money), joined numerous Facebook actor groups, read many books and online posts on acting, training etc., and have spent thousands upon thousands of dollars in efforts to ‘make it’ (headshots, training, classes, workshops, equipment, driving and parking expenses, in efforts to have a sustainable living in the world of acting.

The past five years I have had some very limited success in Toronto based re-enactment TV shows, or Greater Toronto Area (GTA, and further) ‘episodicals’ and occasional commercial, but not once have I booked a “Union” job / role.  In speaking with other actors (thought some were friends but seems only if I reach out to them to speak never a call or message to me) <– waaa waa. ya I know… they have booked and are now Union actors.

What does this say about me??  More than I can accept.

I always thought, and after reading The Oasis Of Insanity – The Study & Pursuit Of Acting At The Beverly Hills Playhouse, by Allen Barton (Strongly recommend this book.)  “if you want to be a lumber jack – move to the forest” seems so true.

A small comment about Allen Barton and The Beverly Hills Playhouse (BHP).  I took some free classes with BHP with Mr. Barton and Cameron Meyer and yep, I like their style, I like how he speaks and teaches and anyone in the class that I reached out to was friendly. Cameron is just a great person too.  SO PERHAPS NOT JUST ME… (would enjoy classes @ BHP, but does not seem an option)

The GTA is great for starting out, and yes some do make a great living here, I have not.  More chances to me are in LA or NY for example.  But then again, being a Canadian without a work permit, an ability to move to the US, existing commitments here, i.e. F/T job (job job), mortgage, family, life etc this does not seem feasible to me.

The expectation, especially during the current COVID-19 restrictions, with the expectations of studio quality self tapes, with the push for super duper clear sound, professional lighting, HD picture quality <– this expectation is an additional cost for microphones, lighting equipment, backdrops, HD video producing camera etc etc are a financial cost.  Oh and I love the answer of if you don’t have what it takes to make a studio quality “AUDITION” then you can drive to the GTA and pay someone to assist. Gas, time, wear / tear on automobile, parking, stress, payment for ‘services’.

Have been told by both agencies I was with, if it doesn’t sound good or look good they won’t submit or if submitted the Casting Director will not watch or consider your audition.

Seems like the skill of the actor is not the forefront for the audition.

DEFINITELY will not book a Union Role or job if the Self Tape Audition is not ‘up to spec’.  SO, to prevent ‘technology’ from causing my shortfall I did purchase a Canon Rebel SL2 camera, lenses, tri pod stands etc, a great microphone, ring lighting – did not hear my audition quality was not up to snuff but then this leaves my acting skill etc…

Back to the GTA CDs I have spoken to, paid for their workshops, in the last couple of years a message I took away from some better known CDs is; if you do not have a large number of ‘followers’ on social media you will not be considered for a role by them. This happened again within the last year as one CD I wanted to work with and respected who casts great shows done in Northern Ontario.  My face showed my displeasure of this in class and was brought up by the CD asking why the face – I replied I don’t have many followers and this discounts me ever.  *insert laughter and snickering from others in the class, can assume with the ‘necessary volume of social media followers’*   (pretty recently I have put a stop with FB, Instagram, Twitter).

I have to ask, HOW DOES HAVING SOCIAL MEDIA FOLLOWERS (sigh) indicate a skill to act????  I cannot respect that thought process and unfortunately will never work with that CD or any CD that will search for you and your number of social media followers before considering you for a role.  *insert straw & camel’s back*

My F/T job, or job / job of 30 years (30 years end of August) I am very grateful to have been employed for this duration with the company.  Thank you for permitting my attempt at this side hobby the last 5 or so years and I will continue to give my all while ‘on the job’.  That is how I am.  Give it all when doing my task or job.

My Tribe

My Tribe.
It’s what we all seem to be looking for, right? Somewhere we feel like we belong and can be an integral member of “My Tribe”.
Okay, scratch that, I will not speak for anyone else, but only myself.
Yes I am looking for My Tribe.

To me the perfect My Tribe would be as an actor. Have always had the interest to act, during high school I was an extra on assorted episodics and movies filmed in the Toronto area. Before I had a car I would take public transit to locations to be on set. One early Sunday morning was needed on the other side of the city before public transit was running I was driven there by a girl friend to make the shoot – Thanks Lynn.
To me, My Tribe would be a place I can be me, talk about things I like without concern of being negatively judged.
A place to feel wanted, appreciated and encouraged.

Does such a place exist?

Heck if I know.

What I do know if for all my years I have been searching for somewhere to call My Tribe. Somewhere I feel right, feel comfortable, feel wanted and yes feel appreciated. No this is not going to be a posting about how I feel so unloved etc. Life is okay, not complaining but do I have a key core group of people I can call members of My Tribe? Deep down I do not feel I have that & IMHO I do believe that the whole (or is that hole) Social Media world that now exists has actually dampened the ability to create or join or be a member of A Tribe; to the point where one can feel it is My Tribe. Social Media is riddled with ignorant, racist people that seem to enjoy nothing more than being rude and mean to the next person. Negative posts about anything seem to get the spot light and the positive actions of others do not get the same attention. Why is that?

But again I drifted away from me and My Tribe.
For years I have tried to be part of groups to find My Tribe but one reason or another they fall short.

Back in the 1990’s I tried to be part of The Second City in Toronto (took a weekend class for improv) and that group and me didn’t seem to mesh. I am not good at breaking the feeling of once I don’t feel welcome, to push through that. Typically when in that situation of not feeling welcome, the easy thing for me (go to move) is to shut down and keep to myself.

Over the last 20 years have attempted to join assorted Mustang clubs in hoping to find My Tribe. Thousands of thousands of dollars spent on purchasing, modifying, maintaining etc etc the number of Mustangs I have had over the years. Seems like the ‘honey moon’ ends and I don’t feel welcomed or wanted. Now at the point, perhaps is time to sell my two remaining Mustangs and use those monies elsewhere.

Have researched to join other acting classes and weekend intensives but typically did not make any friends to join My Tribe and feel out of place.
Have happily joined other Improv evening classes in Toronto.
I live out of the city and have a 1.5hr drive (not making an excuse just stating the truth. Not a problem as I enjoy to drive and is worth the drive if a positive result from class) to get to the class, hwy traffic & finding a safe spot to park my car in the evenings of downtown Toronto and ensuring start time for class – yes, I must not be late. My evening is on it’s side if begins with my being late – for whatever reason. Controllable or not, I am annoyed by being late.
To me, ANY class; be it an acting class, technical or just basket weaving – to me a CLASS SHOULD BE A SAFE PLACE.
I was really enjoying the one Improv class I was taking, felt safe, felt I was making friends but (for a reason I am not clear on but it pushed me out) one of the instructors in a class decided that evening that I was to be singled out and made an example of. I am not driving 1.5hrs (1 way), stressing about the time, traffic, finding parking to pay for, & pay for a class where I will be verbally spoken to like that. Needless to say that was the last time I attended that class. Dropped out of the Facebook group and cut ties with that group. Not placing the blame on everyone else and not myself either. I can be opinionated, my wit can be harsh and it appears the natural pose for my face can be called “Resting Angry Face”. I am not angry, just don’t know how to exist with a permanent smile on my face.

Perhaps I need thicker skin but yesterday I was in an acting class (back in Toronto). Part of the warm up is to make yourself vulnerable in front of the class and look at everyone in their eyes – one person at a time – to center, open up, calm down and feel ready to share.
When others are in front of the class and when we make eye contact I look back with a smile (yes eyes smile too) Well yesterday – 1st time ever but something I have no interest to be part of again – there were two faces that decided to look away when I looked at them. That threw me off, and a third person had such a scowl on her face – the impression of – Hey F off, I don’t want to look at you but since I must you are getting this F you face. That hurt too. Actually so impacted by the two people that did not keep eye contact and the one that looked at me like I killed her loved one that I honestly cannot go back to that environment again. That placed me in a bad space and did impact the scene I performed with a member of the class. His first time there, think he did great considering he is not comfortable with improv and his first time in this class but my performance was probably jaded from the earlier event in the class. In my mind (subconscious or consciously) am aware of the 3 people that really did not want anything to do with me. Perhaps some anger in my delivery due to that, dunno…
Yeah yeah perhaps I need thicker skin true, won’t argue but I feel a class should be a safe place.

I do enjoy hearing people laugh and when caused by me, yes I smile down to my core being. I enjoy open minded discussions about mostly any topic – key word is OPEN MINDED. I have noticed we all fall into the category (more times than not) of having an opinion and anything else is incorrect. *sigh* Guilty of that as well.

I am writing what comes to mind, no filter, no effort for continuity or ease of reading for the reader. As I wonder if anyone actually reads any of my posts (if you know me or not). Have not heard from any of the people I think are my friends so makes me believe they don’t. (just get BOT comments – same over and over here)
I like to believe I will make an effort for someone if noticed they need some help but is very rare I feel the same is returned. Could be due to the fact for years I have built up a guard and make it very difficult for anyone to get to know me. WHY? So I won’t be hurt.

Again not complaining about my life, happy, happily married (thanks Suzy), had a great white German Shepherd for 14 years (Alexis) again Thanks Suzy – Suzy found Alexis and pushed to get her. From a rescue (was going to be put down in 4 hrs) and one of the best things I have been part of to date. Alexis saved my life not the other way around.

Where was I, oh ya – Cause like you I don’t enjoy being hurt and perhaps go too far to ensure I am not. My guard / shield I push out (knowingly or not) seems to prevent me from experiencing all the good the world has to offer me (ya ya so cliché but pharking true) and help me build My Tribe.

My Big Little Girl – July 4, 2018

Okay I will start this by saying yes this wasn’t written on July 4, 2018 but July 17, 2018 – almost 2 weeks after this date.

Because it still hurts; hurts so very much.
What hurts?

Who is Alexis?

Alexis is / was my 14 y/o White Shepherd that came into my life at 6 months old from a rescue.
Alexis was the dog I always wanted.
She was intelligent, caring, faithful, loving, my best friend, great to be around, over all just truly an amazing best friend.

I called her my ‘four legged daughter’ and my ‘big little girl’. I miss her so much and wish she was still around but relieved she is no longer suffering. <— that make any sense?

I miss talking to my big little girl. Yes I spoke to her and we had our own little language. I understood her and she seemed to understand me.

Yes I am sad and feel lonely. Why don’t I talk to someone about this?
I am, right now, talking to YOU.
With her almost every day of her life from when she came into my world, and with her gone, I feel empty.

Been asked will I get another dog? Right now, no way. I am too sore about this empty spot in my world and it would not be fair to any other dog I get as it WILL be compared to Alexis.

Earlier I mentioned that Alexis is no longer suffering. Yes she had lymphoma and it seems the cancer spread to her spine. Last couple of weeks her back legs stopped ‘working’. She could not stand herself and when I stood her she was able to stand for no more than 45 seconds and would drop to her belly.
Made going potty very difficult for her and many times in the last couple weeks I was picking up a dog soaked in either urine or worse.
Like a trooper she stood firm, fighting that cancer with all her might – and for that I respect her – but near the end she was not sleeping for more than a couple minutes at a time as the pain seemed too much. On some meds from the vet but near the end didn’t seem to assist. Her breathing was laboured and short quick breaths is best she could do.
It was decided to put her down.
Suzy found a service that came to the home.

On July 4, 2018, on her own bed, Alexis was given a needle to relax. This was the first time in ages that Alexis seemed to be ‘at ease’. Her breathing slowed down and she was ‘content’ looking.

The hardest thing I have done to date was watching the final needle be inserted into a vien and patting and providing as much love as I could to her while she took her final breathes.

OMFG, this is still so hard for me, and writing this is bringing back all the feelings & emotions.

Alexis, my big little girl, I miss you so much.

Hope there is an afterlife as Alexis will be with my father right now (they were buds) and one day I can be with you again.

Bye my best friend, how you enriched my life and for that I am so grateful.
Glad we rescued you at 6 months old – she was in a high kill zone and was to be put down in 4 hours before we said yes we want her.

Just a lovely best friend anyone can ever have.

I miss you and I do wish to walk, talk to, pet, hold, be with you again.

To My Big Little Girl

Alexis and Me
me & my best friend

Well now…

Hey there quick one for today.
Ever say something that you regret but cannot take it back no matter what you say?

Been there done that and I would like to say I am sorry and I’d love a another chance to be part of it.

What / where have you messed up?

Respond in comments I will review and the non spam items will be posted by me.

Ontario Canada licence plate sticker renewal charge

Hi, if you are like me and are a resident of our fine province of Ontario Canada I would like to bring to your attention an item regarding our licence plate sticker charge.

I am not sure how to form a petition so I will use my blog as a start. If you can help all of us Ontarians here please let me know.

As of September 2015 the yearly charge is increasing another $10.

Last year I paid $90 for my stickers this year I paid $98 and was told in September it is going up again. *Sigh*  WHY??

When I asked for the reason I was told to use these funds to repair & maintain the roads.   Thought the gas tax was to be in part used for that.

With all the HUGE revenues from the Ontario Gambling addiction from our provincial government, why can’t some of these HUGE profits be redirected for necessary provincial items.  Where are all these HUGE gambling profits going??

I feel we in Ontario are being taken to task too much by our provincial government, who have incorrectly or even dishonestly misused our tax dollars.  When is enough, enough?

Our premier MUST be informed that we will not accept any other increase in services as we pay much too much currently.  HST on home utilities is another item that SHOULD be removed but is ignored?  Why??

Please provide a reply here and I will attempt to update daily your comments – good or bad.  I am not like some members of the government that turn a blind eye to items they are not fond of.

I am looking forward to all replies.  BOT or spam replies WILL be deleted.

Hope I don’t regret this, my email address is

PLEASE click at the top of the page LEAVE A REPLY and post your comment and a way to contract you for any possible follow up.  Many thanks.

It’s true – Rich do get richer…

The cost of living today here in Canada is getting out of control.

When I was 16 y/o a litre of gas was 49 cents a litre.  This week I paid $1.31 a litre for gas in my car.  REALLY?  I see record profits from these HUGE oil companies yet they at ANY chance raise the price of oil, which directly reflects on the price of gas at the pumps.  Goes up and up, hardly ever returns to a ‘reasonable’ price.  The excuse for the raise at the pumps INSTANTLY is the price for crude oil went up that day… BUT when the price of crude oil decreases a little, the price at the pump does not go down because the excuse is the gas in the tanks was refined with the more expensive oil… (2 steps forward for increase & a half step – only VERY occasionally back) UH REALLY?  Ever since the mental issue of getting the price at the pump over a dollar per litre these companies are taking complete advantage of us consumers as we are (at least in North America) tied to our automobile.

Profit… When is enough… enough?

Money makes money and unfortunately me and many I know are in the pay to survive life style.  Cost of living increases and the lack of reason or an explanation for these increases.

There are no ways to travel into larger metropolitan areas from remote cities / towns without using a car.  In Ontario anyway; VIA rail is costly and not that reliable.  I know, lived in Trenton Ontario for a while, my wife still worked in Scarborough.  We thought using VIA rail would be great, NOPE.  Cost is too high and too often the train would not run (snow on tracks – really this IS Canada, ya think that would be a non-issue)

The corporate world is in charge and seem to be able to determine what law is passed to suit their needs – regardless of how this impacts any where else, eg environment, other people etc.

Money makes money.  ya

Sad that we are probably the only living organism on the plant that knowingly profits from harming our own kind.  Not even going to touch the race item (sad this is even still quite prevalent in today’s world).

With elections soon to be held here in Ontario, I unfortunately do not see any viable party.  Liberals make a mockery of the tax payers (ya ya, some of you are not going to like that)  and our current non elected Premier feels they did no wrong.  Meh

NDP party for some good ideas, supported the current liberal minority gov’t TOOOO long to get my vote.

If John Tory was still in charge of the provincial PC, my vote would be with him.  Current PC leader Tim Hudak – I dunno, not sure what he feels is best.  Yes I agree, job creation is important in Ontario, as IMO under the long run of the liberal party we in Ontario lost many jobs.  Example, one of my brothers has been unemployed for over 2 years now.  WHY?  Back to jobs in Ontario, yes get them back but at what expense?  We cannot afford any more tax increases.

Cost of hydro, natural gas – home essentials has gone up TOO MUCH.  Liberal party permitted these raises in costs to continue and did nothing to help us average ‘Joe’.  Definitely lost my vote.(I’ll get into my beef about home expenses in another rant soon)

Great now I lost my train of thought, so I will stop here.

Not sure if my displeasure of the world is a combination of getting older and ‘wiser’ <– yes in quotes… and I now see the BS of greed and corruption… Or in fact the world economy is in trouble and as appears to me anyway that the “rich” are getting richer.


Frost Quakes

Whoa, never heard of them before & yet seems that many people are aware.

Well from this winter seems many more of us are ‘in the know’.  Grew up in Toronto and this was not something that was over heard in discussions.  But this season, out here in Bethany, ON – man-o-man, are you kidding me??  They are occurring quite frequently.

These ‘events’ seem like something LARGE hit the side of the home.  Not sure if the home construction has to do with it, but since we are concrete form construction, when a ‘frost quake’ event occurs, the house makes us aware.

Started early in the season out here, one night in bed hear something and think what the heck. Not sure if some animal attempted to gain access to my garage or something hit the home, took a look around but was unable to discover the cause.  Continued for a few nights  & finally I ‘googled’ a description of the sound. – side note, funny how now ‘Google’ is an active part of our vocabulary as a noun OR verb or…

Where was I, oh ya, the response indicated something called ‘Frost Quakes’ & I was like, HUH?

Now even on the news channel I watch, ya ya, even tho I don’t live in Toronto any longer I still watch Toronto news.  I like Global Toronto great cast with the whole news team that are really good.  News, weather or stories I enjoy them & been watching ever since i lived in Toronto.)  During commercial breaks I jump to City News or CBC briefly & these Frost Quakes are mentioned all around.

Something on twitter about them too.  Neat.

Have you had any ‘Frost Quake’ events you’d like to share?

Let me know by leaving a reply.

Thank you.