Monday, June 30, 2003

Do Not Call... unless...

As many of you have probably heard the national Do Not Call Registry is up and running. The gov wants you to think that signing up on this list will keep telemarketers from calling you.

Hmm... almost right.

Turns out that long-distance phone companies, airlines, banks and credit unions, insurance companies, political organizations (!), charities, and telephone surveyors can still call whenever they wish. Isn't that nice?

Okay, but enough with the cynicism. It's a baby step but that's usually how our government works. (I say "usually" due to the glaring exception of certain POTUSes handing everything over to the richest 1% in our country... asshole!) So, I'm signing up.

Okay, I know. Not much of a post. I have plenty to say about things going on in my life - and the return of insomnia - but we'll get to that later.

Thursday, June 26, 2003

Who can believe it's nearly July?...

Yep, month seven is coming 'round the bend and, quite frankly, I just can't believe it. What happened to those halcyon days when time went to slowly... oh, wait... I was on halcyon...

Not much to say this morning, I'll just break it down into a list:

1) With July comes a trip out to see Dad and Blanche in Arizona. They don't know about it, yet, because I haven't quite figured it out. But it will be soon because, if you're going to drive to the desert, July is the time to do it. Yep, I wanna melt! I want to see my paint drip off my car. I want to leave tire-tracks where my tires melt off their tracks!

2) Time-off time is coming to a close and it feels like it just started. Time-off and I have a love/fuck you relationship. I would like nothing more than to be one of those people who can do their jobs and go home to sink in front of the teley with a brewski. That would be fine by me! But, NOoooooo! I have to be one of these people who has to produce! Every day, I am driven forward by my own mortality. As if that happening in the abstract is not enough, I've actually been having the thought quite frequently, "One more day gone until you're dead." As if I needed a reminder!

3) Speaking of jobs, have I mentioned that I hate mine. I'm using the word "hate" here. I've never worked for a bunch so incompetent and unorganized and... lucky. Fucking lucky. If Linksys hadn't been bought out by Cisco, they'd be floundering. As it is, they have Cisco to bouy them up. While it never helped that the CEO's neice accused me of sexual harrassment, now - three years after it was proven that I didn't and one year after the neice herself publicly said I didn't - people still hate me, including the CEO. Needless to say, it's a painfully uncomfortable environment. Anybody hiring writers out there???

4) My sleep hasn't become any more regular, either. Recently, I've been losing my share of it over a thought that many of you will be surprised is just occurring to me.

I'm never going to get Rosa back again. Rosa's gone.

It's a thought that makes me want to vomit, it's so hard to take. To lose the only woman you ever truly loved - this is not something I would wish on my worst enemies, including those at Linksys.

And, so, that's my life as we near July. Maybe July will hold better things.... doubt it.

Wednesday, June 25, 2003

Welcome to "Enemy du Jour"...

Have you noticed how Shrub's policy of propaganda relies heavily on the "enemy du jour"? It seems our enemy changes every week. (Which would make this the "enemy de la semaine" but let's stick with du jour... it sounds better.)

Does anyone remember North Korea? Remember when they were going to nuke the west coast? They didn't last long. Then, it became Iraq. Then it was al Queda, Iraq, Iran, North Korea, and al Queda all over again. Mind you, North Korea is still seething with hatred towards our government. Hell, most of the US is, too.

As long as Shrub can cycle us through an endless array of enemies, he can keep paranoia high. He can keep our Amber alert! Worse, he can get re-elected.

We have to educate people as to exactly what Shrub is doing with these weekly threats and weekly enemies. It ownly creates more animosity towards our country all over the world and weakens the ability of the US to create strong ties and promote peace.

... But that's just what Shrub wants.

Be aware, folks. Wake up!
Shrub Scrubbed?

"Free those people." "Terrorists." "Weapons of Mass Destruction."

We heard these and many other reasons for the war in Iraq. Of course, many of those people didn't want to be "freed", as we had "freed" the people of Afghanistan. There was no proof of terrorism. And Shrub never did find those WMDs. I'd begun to wonder why no one called for an investigation.

Well, now it's happened and you can be a part of it. Simply go to and sign their petition. As their site says:

Dear friend,

The President took the nation to war based on his assertion that Iraq posed an imminent threat to our country. Now the evidence that backed that assertion is falling apart.

If the Bush administration distorted intelligence or knowingly used false data to support the call to war, it would be an unprecedented deception. Even if weapons are now found, it'll be difficult to justify pre-war language that indicated that the exact location of the weapons was known and that they were ready to deploy at a moment's notice. With a crisis of credibility brewing abroad and the integrity of our President and our foreign policy on the line, we need answers now.

Please join me in asking Congress to establish an independent, bipartisan commission to investigate the distortion of evidence now, at:

A President may make no more important decision than whether or not to take a country to war. If Bush and his officials deceived the American public to create support for the Iraq war, they need to be held accountable.


Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Taking time off...

Well, we've reached the half-way mark of a year that will be looked back upon as "2003". (Unless something goes horribly wrong...) In those six months, I've had a staged reading for Atheists, finished writing Whatever Happened to Me, performed in a staged reading for Steve, and directed and acted in the staged reading for Whatever Happened to Me. Yep, I've been fine, plenty busy. Mind you, I took some time off in the midst of all that - you'll remember it as when I was trying to get Rosa back (I didn't say it wasn't a waste of time...) - but after directing and acting in my show, I decided it was time for another mini-vacation.

Sadly, my boss didn't think so - that means I'm still working. But like most Americans, I've been going home and resting on my ass for the past week or so.

It's been nice.

Sadly, though, I'm just not built for time off. I get too antsy. So, I've been contemplating the next step. I would like to do some real acting again. To this end, I've had new headshots taken. They look great... but they take more money to be printed. It doesn't look like that's going to happen until July 11. So much for that idea. Another idea is to write, which you may have noticed that I do... occasionally. Whatever Happened to Me and Atheists both need rewrites. I think I may start that next week. I'd also like to do a complete rewrite of my first play, Everything Changes. There's a good play in there... somewhere.

More on plays in a moment. First, a couple notes on how you waste a week...

Old Town

Saturday, I was climbing the walls. ... No, not literally.

I decided to spend the afternoon with Tim, down in San Diego. Picking him up from work, we decided to waste the afternoon away in Old Town. Old Town, San Diego.

Ever been? Old Town is a state park down there, the only shopping mall state park I know of. Literally, the place is one huge shopping mall. Oh, sure, their stores are quaint and homey but a shopping mall by any other name... you know.

Rosa and I had gone there back in '93 - yep, 10 years ago. We had a 24-hour test drive from Saturn and decided to test drive it down to San Diego. It was a beautiful day, but then every day with Rosa was.

I told Tim about this and he suggested that, perhaps, we shouldn't go. No, I said. I'd have to get used to being without Rosa one of these days. Right?

When Rosa and I had been there, it seemed so huge. Now, it was no bigger than a couple of blocks. How odd! We had a bite to eat. We went to a cemetery and made jokes about the dead. (Okay, mostly I did.) We sat and smoked and talked and talked. It was quite nice. Sure, the specter of Rosa hung over my head the entire time but it was one step away from her. Granted, it's a long way from Old Town to Seattle - both geographically and metaphorically.

The Matrix, too...

Last night, Keith and I saw the new Matrix movie. Matrix Retooled, er, Regrouted, er, Rebirthed, er, Retarded... the second one.

Now, I didn't think the first Matrix was as world-shaking as some people I know. I found it to be a nice distraction but that's about it. For all the talk you hear about how philosophical the Matrix was, you're talking to an ex-Philosophy major here. I've read my share of Nietzsche, Sartre, Plato, Kant, Descartes, Spinoza - blah, blah, blah. While I won't go so far as to call the Wachowski brothers plagiarists, they certainly borrowed everything they had to say from someone else. There was really nothing new to be had there.

Still, it was an entertaining diversion.

Well, Keith and I went in to see this one (care of free passes from City of Hope - give platelets, folks, you'll be glad you did!) on an IMAX screen. Yep, my first Imax experience was... not for something great... darnit. Still, Keith was pleased as punch, so that was cool.

For those of you who have not experienced Imax... it's big. The screen is the size of Shrub's arrogance. You have to climb a small mountain to get to your seat.

This movie was more of the same, of course. More wondering who ever thought Keanu could act. More hackneyed pop-philosophy. (I will say that if that's the only way you get to exercise your brain, you should have at least that much... and shame the hell on you!)

Finally, there were more, much more, special effects.

The whole movie was a special effect.

I began to wonder, halfway through the film, how long this could go on. How long can movie studios keep topping the previous movie. Special effects keep getting bigger. Budgets keep getting bigger. (This movie was made by enough people to repopulate a small planet.) For how long will people continue to be entertained by seemingly-linear entertainment, held only by the next explosion or fight? How long can this continue?

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say not long. The time is coming when movies will change in a way we cannot imagine. I'd give it twenty years. When you see the new Matrix, you can see how it's pushing at the hinges of its linear track, straining to hold an ever-decreasing attention span. Very soon, people will no longer tolerate pre-fab stories and will demand their own linear track. Movies will die to the individual experience. What that experience will be cannot be dreamt by a writer of linear stories such as myself. They will be invented by computer coders and designers with names we cannot foresee. This isn't science fiction. It's happening already. Why do you think the video game market now makes more money than the movie and TV industries combined?

Just wait.


When I was a kid, I was never able to sit still. I would fidget this way and twitch that way. "Hyperactive" they called it. As I got older, I wouldn't fidget the same way but I would still have to shift this way and that. Smooth my hair. Tug on my sleeve. Rub my feet together.

I've noticed that I still do that. At 37 years old! I scratch my head, rub my eye, scratch my leg, crinkle my face, brush back my hair, pull my ear, scratch my chin - all in the span of a few minutes. This troubles me. I can see myself at 70; one of those old men mumbling to himself and twitching.

Old age scares me flat.

When is a play not a play?...

And, so, I've been thinking about plays. I don't have to think too hard; ideas come to me all the time. Here are a few hanging in the rafters of my mind like bothersome bats:

1) This They Call Freedom - a political farce I'd started over a year ago. While I'd love to write it, I think I missed that moment.
2) Blind Dates - a story about two people who are set up on a series of blind dates throughout their lives. Everyone thinks they'd be great for each other but they can't stand each other.
3) Emotional Cripples - a story of a group of people in their twenties, trying to come to terms with ruined marriages, lost hope, and reality in general
4) 24 Carrots - a murder mystery
5) Death Takes an Egg Salad on Rye - Death tries to understand Hope. With the help of a man about to lose his wife, Death encounters the personifications of abstract thoughts.

Those are just a few. Oh, sure, I'd like to write them. But writing a play is about more than just putting the words down.

First, the timing has to be just right... or just write. I started This They Call Freedom very powerfully but got called away from it and have never been able to recapture the same kind of energy I had when I started. It's like losing the mood in sex. You're going at it and suddenly your mom calls... so much for sex. I don't know about you but that's a mood killer for me.

Second, it's important to keep in mind what you're doing. The theatrical experience is about a relationship, a relationship between the performer and the audience. You don't get that from TV or movies. You don't go to a theatre just to be entertained. Let's face it - if you wanted that, you could get it much better from a movie... or a prostitute. Anyway, theater has to offer much more than just entertainment. It HAS to talk to you.

Next, you need to keep in mind where you're doing it. Theater is limited by three dimensions. Unlike film, you can't jump from here to here to here. You are in a specific place - you're not going anywhere. A play like Emotional Cripples would probably work better as a movie. In fact, the more I write plays and the more plays I write, the more I feel like writing movies! (Son of a bitch.)

Lastly, there are so many little things the individual writer has to consider. Does the subject matter match the writer? Can you write that like NO ONE else? Is it worth your time? Should you waste your time with fluff or would it be better spend writing something "important".

I like to break rules in my plays. In Everything Changes, I played with time. I had characters hearing their own voices from the past on stage, which I did through voice-overs. In Atheists, I played with space. Action shifted from one area to another through flash-backs and interludes. In Whatever Happened to Me, I played with time again. This time, I wanted the same character physically on stage talking to himself. All of these things can be done far more easily in film but, I think since you don't expect it in theatre, it makes the theatrical experience that much more entertaining. And, so, I wonder what will my next play hold? What toys, now that I've played with time and space, can I play with now?

So many things.

So, I don't just start a play. I wait until it makes itself appealing, until it grabs me and won't let go. After all, if it doesn't do that to me, how can I expect it to happen to the audience?

Considering that the wall-climbing has already begun, though, I don't know how much longer I'll be able to hold out before relaxing just ain't enough.

... and there's something horribly wrong with that!

One constant, though, is that whatever I do start will be something I won't see coming.

Until then, I'm getting my copy of GTA 3: Vice City. Time to relax.

Thursday, June 19, 2003

Whatever Happened to WHtM???

Well, the week's almost over and I know a few of you have been waiting for an update. ... Sorry. I've been very busy relaxing...

So, what happened last Sunday? Last Sunday was the staged reading of Whatever Happened to Me, my third full-length play, the last in the "Comedies About Loss" series. The idea of having a staged reading was sprung on me rather late in the day - only a few weeks before the reading itself. The play wasn't finished. I didn't have a director. I didn't have rehearsal space. But I knew that opportunities like that don't come along every day and I had to take it.

Then, I finished the play. I directed it. I acted in it. Rosa offered her patio to rehearse upon and, at the last minute, withdrew her offer. By this time, it was really feeling like me against the world and I decided, "To hell with the world, I'm going to do this!" I found rehearsal space. I cast the show. I went to the Chance to see what kind of space I'd be working in and I blocked around it. This all took so much time that I was still scrambling the day before the first rehearsal. The next day, waking up exhausted, I got up and got myself ready for the first rehearsal.

There were two rehearsals and one read-through. Well, read-throughs are nothing. I mean, if the staged reading was just a bunch of people sitting around reading to you, it would have been great. But performances are much more than that. On to the first rehearsal.

First rehearsal was... bad. Just plain bad. Stinky bad. But everyone I was working with had plenty of experience. I gave them lots of feedback on their parts, made everything clear to them - by the end, I was exhausted! Thankfully, plenty of them promised to help me. In fact, each cast member contributed a great deal for props and costuming, helping me immensely. And I was grateful.

Second rehearsal. Now, we were on the ball. Unstoppable. The cast was FUNNY! I loved it! Everybody hit their marks, remembered their cues, had reflected on my notes. They were fan-freakin-tastic! On top of that, we had all of our props. Things couldn't go better.

There's an old saying in theater, though. "Good dress rehearsal, bad performance." I'm here to tell you, it is SO right. Wondering how?

... Watch.

I got to the theater at about 7pm. Showtime was at 8pm. Calltime (when everyone was to show) was at 7:30. The show before ours was still going on... so we waited.

By 7:15, the entire cast had arrived... but the show before ours was still on... so we waited.

By 7:30, I'd started smoking - something I've been laying off of... and the show before ours was just getting out. They still had to clean up... so we waited.

At about 7:45, they let us in. I was ready to scramble in there and get to work. Except... except... the stage looked... um... different. This wasn't the stage they'd shown me. This wasn't the spaced I'd blocked the show for. I politely asked what happened. "Oh, this is a different show," I was told. No kidding. The stage I'd seen had been occupied by two table-like blocks from both left and right sides of the stage. Now, the blocks had been broken down into little hill-like structures on each side. I asked, "Can we restack these so they look like tables?" "No," I was told, "They can't be moved."

"Can't be moved," I asked, lifting one. "What do you mean?"

"There's bare stage underneath. We can't have that."

"But I blocked my show for a totally different stage. You told me it would be totally different."


Giving up on that for a moment, I went to the large, rebar-ish, tree-looking, kind of structures that occupied stage center. "What about these? Can I move these?"

"No. Those can't be moved."

"But this is supposed to be a person's apartment!"

"We can't move them. They weigh 350 pounds each."

"Do they," I asked, lifting one. "If they do, I must be really strong!"

I moved them as far off stage as I could. We dug up something that could be a kitchen table on one side. On the other side, we had a three-foot tall drafting table. How embarrassing!

But it got better.

I had asked John Bolen to describe the stage for me when he introduced the show. After all, I figured, if they'd been bastards enough to screw with my blocking the least they could do would be to explain what the audience was supposed to be seeing. He only explained about half of it and I wanted to kill him but I was backstage, getting ready to act.

The play started... and I really wanted to die in any millions of ways possible. At least half of the blocking was thrown right out the window. Major goofs by everyone (including yours truly). Just stupid errors!

Then, when we finally got to intermission and I thought I could rally the troops for a better second half - they kept acting! Right through the intermission! They didn't even give people a chance to go to the bathroom!!


Well, people said they liked it. That's all that matters, right?

As for me, I'm going to lay off the writing/directing/acting for a while... and have a few dozen martinis...

Friday, June 13, 2003

Whatever Happened to Dennis Miller...

Whoever said "Timing is everything" must have written this article.

With my play coming up this weekend, what better "Pre-Play" post (he said alliteratively) than a 15-year-younger Dennis Miller verbally bitch-slapping the Bush-bitch Miller of today? For instance:

Your simplistic, reactionary logic is more suited to a caller on the Dr. Laura Schlessinger Show than someone of my intelligence. Look, my appeal has always been my ability to turn to the camera, wink and say "Are you folks buying any of this shit?" Now you've made me the King of Assholia, to quote myself. What have you done to me? Jesus, your mind is growing in inverse proportion to your prostate. You drove your career off the side of the road like Corey Feldman on an all-night crank and sterno binge...

With people like this fading into right-wing oblivion, it makes me think I should start writing comedies...

Thursday, June 12, 2003

War Crimes...

You can talk about the US slaughtering the Indians, slaughtering the blacks, slaughtering the south-east asians and not come close to talking about the war crimes perpetuated by the US over the years. Yep, the US is guilty of some serious shit and those who choose to deny it are living smack dab in an Egyptian river.

That said, things didn't start getting seriously bad until around 35 years ago. From Henry Kissinger to Tommy Franks, we've done our share to challenge Himler and Amin. Now, the world would like to do something about it. Various countries, who have been involuntarily depopulated by US troops, have been trying to take the US to the Haque for war crimes trials.

Enter US Influence, otherwise known at MONEY, and you get this:

The U.N. Security Council on Thursday approved another one-year exemption for American peacekeepers from prosecution by the new international war crimes tribunal.

So the headline read to this article. Don't you like how they put that. "Peacekeepers." Well, why would "peacekeepers" ever be tried for war crimes? That doesn't make sense! Only EVIL people should be tried for war crimes - and "Peacekeepers" aren't EVIL... right?

I gotta laugh when the media is so firmly in the government's pocket... if I didn't, I'd be scared to death.

Tuesday, June 10, 2003


Will this show be DOA (Dumb on Arrival)? Only the performance will tell...

We had our first full rehearsal last night - only one left - and something came as a surprise... This might not be a comedy we have here, after all! If it's a comedy, let's say it's a comedy like M*A*S*H was a comedy, or like thirysomething was a comedy, or like Citizen Kane was a comed... My expectations have lowered so far at this point, I'm just hoping we can keep the audience moderately amused.

On the positive side, rehearsal went rather well. The blocking works and the actors seem to be getting into the whole vibe of the thing. As I might have mentioned before, doing this directing gives me a lot less time to work on my acting - so the rotten actor up on stage might be ME!

Less than a week to go... and then I can finally shave!!!

Monday, June 09, 2003

Thoroughly Read Through...

Last night was the first read-through of my play, Whatever Happened to Me - showing at 8pm on June 15th at The Chance Theater (says "Shameless Plug Man").

What happened was very interesting.

I am accustomed to my plays being met with some discussion, some controversy, and even some laughter.

Last night, there was no discussion, no controversy... no laughter.

Could I have written a bomb? A stinker? A... shit pile? It wouldn't be my first. It would just be the first one I directed for an audience...

I'll keep you posted.

(Isn't this better than hearing about Rosa?)


Friday, June 06, 2003

Have You Driven a Ford...?

Here's a little something for Sean and all you Ford lovers out there.

Did you know that Ford cars get WORSE GAS MILEAGE now than they did 100 years ago???

According to Reuters:

The Sierra Club, a leading U.S. environmentalist group, plans to run advertisements criticizing Ford Motor Co. for making vehicles that are less fuel-efficient now -- on its 100th birthday -- than when it began.

The ads, scheduled to run in The New York Times and BusinessWeek, note that the Model T got 25 miles to the gallon nearly a century ago. The headline reads, "1903-2003 A Century of Innovation ... except at Ford."

Dearborn, Michigan-based Ford's average vehicle now gets 22.6 miles per gallon, with its popular Explorer sports utility vehicle getting 16 miles per gallon, according to the Sierra Club ad.
A little "WHtM" Update...

The day is getting closer. Rehearsals are soon to start. And "Whatever Happened to Me" will soon see an audience!

Our first rehearsal is Sunday, June 8. It's actually a "read-through", which is kind of funny since the cast has had their scripts for a week now and should already be familiar with them.

But just because rehearsals don't start until Sunday, don't think I haven't been a beehive of activity.


I've already met with all of my cast members and, barring any people suddenly leaving the show, it looks like we have a good cast.

My only source of panic right now is Tim Clostio. (Yes, Tim. It's public chastisement time.) Tim is playing the Heckler and he has yet to call me back to confirm he can do it... and he said he'd call by Thursday. That was yesterday and now I'm starting to panic. If I don't hear from him soon, I'm driving down to San Diego and killing him!

Props, etc...

I've been working on getting all the props together. This show is going to have in excess of 20 props. Over 20 props for a staged reading? Think I'm getting a little ambitious? But the way I've worked these out, it shouldn't be a burden on the actors. Most of the props are set dressing, only used for a few minutes. (Two props - a couple of big pillows - are being included to save a couple of actor's butts...)


Creating a flyer for the show has been no problem. It reads:

His wife has left him, his father is a stranger, and now James Newman has a new roommate - his 21-year old self...
Whatever Happened to Me?
This Father's Day, the future lies in the past...

Catchy, ain't it?

Now, I've already included Tim in the cast list... so he'd better do this!!!!! (Yes. I'm freaking out a little.)


I've been working on the blocking all week long. I'm trying to keep it simple (the old "KISS" rule) but there are times when I get... a bit... wild.

See, here's the thing. The last show I directed was "Improvisation", a farce by Eugene Ionesco. In it, I had the characters moving about maniacally to reflect the play's sense of insanity.

... and I kind of like that.

So, I've decided to ignore that whole "learn the rules so you can break the rules" theory and move right to breaking the rules. As with my writing, I won't know if it works until it's in front of people - but as I told Steve last night, if the actor's don't get it, that's a good sign the audience won't either.

And, so, I've got just a couple of days to go before the first rehearsal. I'm confident that, if everything works out (TIM, Call!!!), we should have a pretty good reading on our hands.

Don't forget! The Chance Theater in Anaheim. June 15. 8pm.

Tuesday, June 03, 2003

Bad Connections...

Sorry I haven't written in a while... things have been busy.

As some of you may know, I appeared at the Hunger Artists Theater on Saturday afternoon (well, I didn't appear there... I drove) to perform in "Love and Politics", a staged reading that Steve directed. Well, to keep this short, let me just say that I've done better. I got tripped up on the very long monologues, trying to interact with the audience while reading - and losing my place multiple times. Oh well.

In addition to that show, I'm also involved in a staged reading of my third play, Whatever Happened to Me, which will be presented at The Chance in Anaheim Hills on June 15 (Father's Day!) at 8pm. I hope you can all make it. It is my experience thus far with the show that is the topic of this email and you should soon see why "Bad Connections" refers to more than just my inability to make an entry here.

Ken La Salle - Writer

This reading came about as a lark. New Voices, a playwriting group in Orange County had a staged reading planned in June but the writer of the play scheduled decided to pull his play and New Voices was left high and dry. John, the producer (in as much as one can be a producer of a staged reading), put out an open call to New Voices members to have their plays read. Somehow, I received this email. Figuring I had nothing to lose, I replied, saying something along the lines of, "Hey, I'm not a member. Wanna put on one of my plays?"

You can imagine my surprise when they said, "Yes." It sounded something like, "... erm?"

Ken La Salle - Director

As I had done with my previous two plays when they were read on stage, I went to Steve and asked him to direct. He said, "I might be busy but I want to do it." Well, I had to give New Voices an answer and, so, figuring that opportunities such as these do not come up every day, I told them, "Okay. I'll do it on the 15th," hoping to give Steve as much time as possible. (The 15th was the last day available, you see...)

You can imagine my surprise when Steve said, "I'm sorry, Ken. I'm too busy... but you can direct it!" It sounded something like, "... guh?"

And, so, I became the director. I hadn't directed in 20 years. Back in the early 1980's (yes, a long time ago, folks), I had been assistant director on a product of Harvey. Then, a few months later, I directed Ionesco's Improvisation... a production that collapsed under it's own weight about a week before it was to be produced and, so, wasn't... ever. How sad!

My directorial skills are, he says understatingly, rusty.

So, I sat down with myself and made a list of things I'd have to do. Get a cast. Get rehearsal space. (The Chance wasn't going to let us rehearse there.) Wrangle props. Prepare a cd of sound cues. Make blocking notes.

Then, of course, we'd have to rehearse...

But where to rehearse? Every place I could think of became immediately unavailable. Then, I had to get creative. What did I need, I thought... Well, a big room or empty space... like a patio... I knew someone with a large patio - Rosa! I asked her and, surprisingly enough, she happily agreed to let me hold two rehearsals on her patio.

I lucked out with the cast. Basically, I said, "These are the people I want and I better get them because I have no other ideas." Well, I got them. But there was one problem. The show requires some tricky casting, being about a 35-year old whose 21-year old self shows up at his door. I needed two guys who looked about the right ages and, at least, somewhat related.

... But who? Who did I know? Who could pass as even REMOTELY related.

I didn't like the answer when it occurred to me: Chris... and Me.

... You can imagine my surprise.

Ken La Salle - Actor

And, so, I would also star in the show. Now, before you start giving me grief as writer/director/actor, let me save you the time and tell you that I've been hearing nothing else. It's so annoying. People are calling me an egomaniac and I DIDN'T WANT TO DO THIS! I wanted to sit back and watch it! I wanted someone else to direct! SHIT! So save your insults, peanut gallery. You got beaten to it.

So, I had my cast. I had my rehearsal space. I had some ideas on sound cues. I was starting to wrangle my props.

Then, I got a call... and you can imagine my surprise...

Bye Bye Rosa

You were wondering when this was finally going to happen, weren't you?

The call I got was from Michael, Rosa's guy... so to speak. He told me that they're far too stressed out to have me over and rehearsing there. They didn't want to clean their house, act as hosts... be conscious! I told him that all I needed was his patio. I didn't need the house clean. In fact, I offered to clean his patio each day when we were done (mind you this is for two three-hour rehearsals). Nope. No dice.

This made me so angry. I mean, I'd helped Rosa out and I'd helped Michael out and I really needed their help with this relatively small thing. So, I called Rosa to try and get her to understand. I begged. I pleaded. Her reply? "You know I care a lot about you but we're just too busy." I tried to reason with her and tell her that they could do their regular routine - we wouldn't even enter the house! We'd stay in the back yard! Her reply? "This is just a hard time for Michael and I have to consider his feelings."

And this is what it really came down to. As in need as I was and as easily as she could have helped me, I just wasn't that important to her. And I realize that I never really have been. Rosa never really gave me that much and she never really wanted to. As sad as it sounds, is it any surprise that, having gained her degree and her home, she told me to find someone else? Maybe Rosa doesn't understand love - and, maybe, she does and simply used me all those years for what she could get. But when it came down to and I needed her, she refused to be there for me. And what better sign is there of disinterest than that?

And, so, I gritted my teeth, choked back the rage, and found another place to rehearse. Over the past week, I realized that it makes no sense for me to wait around for her because she'll never be there for me. I'm tired of being used and tossed aside - I deserve better than that. And I deserve better than Rosa. I deserve to be loved and appreciated.

Now... let's hope it happens.

So, you can see why I haven't written in a while. Lots of stuff happening. This week, I have to get together the props for the show, make my blocking notes, and start getting familiar with my lines. Next week, we're talking rehearsal, baby!

... I'll try to write before then...