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Weighty thoughts

A friend of mine, who like me happens to be a fat guy (and a very handsome one -- secretly, he's who I always want to look like), posted the following two links yesterday in a personal blog entry. They sort of tie into some of my own issues, so I thought I'd repost and talk a little about where I'm at. (The text linking to the articles is also his, as I couldn't think of any better way it could be said ...)

An article that you should not read if you're fat and not feeling totally comfortable with that right now.

A response to said article.

I'm not going to talk about the article per se, particularly since the response is a far more well thought-out and said than I would be able to come up with. But when I read both the article and the response, the dialogue felt very familiar. I've dealt with a lot of issues of guilt about my weight and what other people must think of me, and of course I've dealt with a lot of issues regarding what I think of me, and still do work through those pretty regularly. Some days I do better, some days not so well.

But it particularly resonated for me because I've been on a 'diet' for a couple of months now -- really just cutting back and watching my calories a lot, since with my leg I can't really increase my exercise in tremendous ways at the moment. The reasons for dieting came from several directions -- mainly, the fact that the specialist kept telling me at every appointment about my leg that it was going to make a big difference if I could lose some weight (and I've been dealing with this leg thing since April; I'd really like for it to heal up completely), but also because I've sort of steadily gained bit by bit since the divorce and living on my own, and I wanted to try to become more aware of my eating patterns and where I was really sort of letting myself indulge more than I should.

And all of that is fine -- those are I think some pretty valid reasons, and I haven't been denying myself constantly -- if I'm out with my friends, or when Anne was down the other weekend, I still eat things I want to eat (while entering them all into my calorie counter). I've done pretty well with it so far; in the past few months I've lost about 20 pounds, and I feel like I can keep going from there. I don't have a real 'target' of any sort, and I don't plan to be this ascetic about it after the move; one of the many things I'm looking forward to is sharing meals and cooking experiences with Anne and exploring new restaurants and foods and adventures of that sort.

Where it's not so fine is that it's so easy to slip into this weight-loss mindset where I'm wondering if anyone 'notices', and seeking their approval, and weighing myself every day in hopes that I can casually mention that I've lost another pound or two. And this is where I think it ties into the articles above, because I think a lot of why I get into that view of it is because I still feel like people must be judging me by my weight, that somehow my popularity and attractiveness and general worth are affected by how fat I am. I feel like if I take up less space on the subway, if I can fit into smaller sizes and don't have to ask for armless chairs or a table instead of a booth in certain restaurants, somehow that makes me a better person in ways that aren't related at all to my health, and I don't like that my mind still heads in those directions.

I guess it's just one of those things you keep chipping away at. I've made some great strides in the past few years in other parts of my self-image, realizing that I shouldn't make assumptions or judge myself more harshly than other people. This is just one place I keep having to come back to for further examination.

I try to look at myself the way I look at my friends -- the person from whom I got the links above I think is incredible, and I've always had a little crush on both him and his wife, who are both beautiful wonderful fat people. And Anne, who is amazing and gorgeous and brilliant and dammit, I won't ever allow my own issues to keep me from being affectionate with her in public and private and anywhere in between. And my other friends and loves who have struggled with these issues and are inspirational in so many ways they don't even know.

Dammit, at some point I'm going to make it to the revolution.

just to say (public post)

I've trimmed my friends list here a bit, for a few reasons. If you wanted to still be reading about my life, or you're just finding this journal and want to come in, leave a comment (all comments will be screened). Thanks.
I know, I know, I just sent a message around a few days back letting you know our trailer was online (and it still is! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cj3TVcZ1qKw&feature=channel_page), but this is the day you've all been waiting for! Well, at least it's the day *we've* all been waiting for ...

Tickets to Godzila on Sundays are now for sale at the Bread and Circus website -- http://www.breadandcircus.ca/ ! You can pre-order online through the website (at a reduced price of $13 -- two bucks less than at the door), or you can call and make a reservation at 416-336-3399. Either way, it's time to get 'em while you can -- we sold out half our performances last time, you don't want to miss this monstrous production!

And of course, don't forget to spread the word -- our faithful Monkey minions are the best advertising! Share and enjoy!

Godzilla trailer is online!

Hey hey ... we shot a trailer for Godzilla on Sundays, and now it's up on Youtube! See it, be it, share it with your friends!


Monkey Night in Canada!

First of all, for Toronto folks, the announcement:

Monkeyman Productions Fundraiser for GODZILLA ON SUNDAYS
HARD ROCK CAFE, 279 Yonge St., 2nd Floor
Doors open at 7:30 pm, Suggested donation of $5
***For more information, check out the Facebook event***

And now that the announcement part is over and done, we could also still use some help from people to make this happen (and by extension, to make the show happen because we really need to fill a gap in the budget with this event). If you would be interested / able to:

-- perform for the fundraiser
-- donate some geeky good / service for the Silent Auction

Please let me know! Your help makes our show gooder! And of course, you'd earn my (and the company's) eternal gratitude. Eternal! Gratitude! And also of course, please pimp the event to your friends -- the more the merrier!

And if you're not nearby, keep your fingers crossed for us -- this is an important part of the process of putting our first full-length production together, and I'm hoping it all works well.

just my two cents for my american comrades

After my man Barney Frank had his moment in the limelight regarding the current healthcare debate in the Land of My Birth, I thought that I might make a short statement for my American friends. Though, of course, saying this to my friends list is really preaching to the choir:

I've lived in Canada for almost six years now. I've been sick here several times, I've been to doctors and specialists and hospitals and pharmacies for a variety of reasons. I've always been happy with the level of care I've received, I've never felt overlooked in any way or that I've been kept waiting for longer than was reasonable (certainly no longer than waiting times in the states). My experience here has covered both the smaller town I first moved to when coming to Canada, and of course my current home in the biggest city in the country; it's covered times when I was out of work with no supplementary insurance and times such as now when I have a work-related insurance package to help out with drug costs, dental and so on. I've gone to family doctors and clinics and emergency rooms.

Honestly, the only real difference I've felt hasn't been in comparing the level of care in both countries (though I know people who've been through much worse in the States, I'm only going to speak to my personal experience). It's been in the fact that, when I was sick in the US, I was always afraid of what it was going to cost and how I would pay for it. I wound up in crippling debt several times because of a visit to the emergency room when I had no insurance; I spent years and years without regular physicals; I suffered through illnesses and injuries at home when it might have been better to go to a professional and have it diagnosed / treated -- because I just couldn't afford that.

I'm aware that the discussion doesn't come down solely to a matter of dollars and cents, but I've been poor and sick in both countries and it makes a huge difference as to how you think of your personal health when you know it might break you financially to get treatment. I do feel like this is one of the places where government has a right (if not a responsibility) to intervene. According to the United States Declaration of Independence, every one of us has a right to "Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" -- at least two of these, if not all three, are hampered by inequitable access to proper health care, and the inequity in the US almost always comes down to what the patient can afford. That's just not right, whatever country you live in.

Up from the depths ...

Starting to get focused on our fall show these days, which is a remounting (and a back-to-full-lengthening) of my play Godzilla on Sundays. There's a ton of stuff to do as playwright / co-producer at the moment, but it's one of the littlest things I'm always absurdly proud of:


At some point, I really do plan to pass over the website stuff to someone who can do it and make it look good ... but there's a definite sense of accomplishment to doing it all myself. And I'm actually pretty proud of the promotional stuff I wrote for the site -- I'm doing a much better job these days of writing summaries and so on.

So check out the site, and make plans to check out the show! :D

I don't think I've ever posted this before

Perhaps I have, but if so it bears repeating. This is my favourite poem in all the world. Despite (or perhaps because of) my troubled relationship with the subject matter as it would apply in my life, it touches me so deeply I'm tearing up before I even think of the words ...
Read more...Collapse )

And now, your moment of zen ...

Just because an LJ friend was talking about cute baby animals and I dredged up this picture from the wilds of le Google to show her ...


Opening night!


We open tonight! I'm a little bit scared, a little bit excited and a whole lot ready for an audience. I'll let you know how it goes.

Up, up, and awaaaaaayyy ...

To any and everyone:

I don't think I've mentioned this in a while, but several of my good friends have Etsy stores you should check out:




and http://eclarefabrications.etsy.com , though for the moment her shop is on hold.

Spend, spend, spend! THE ECONOMY NEEDS YOU! :P

Those not following me on Twitter ...

... or Facebook, you may have missed my most hilarious moment yesterday:


If they did a show that was all about jumping over shark tanks, how would you know when it went too far?
7:15 AM Mar 11th from web


Shameless self-promotion (as usual)

I actually keep forgetting to mention -- hell, with everything going on in my life right now, I just keep forgetting -- but I have a play opening in a week and a half as a part of Alumnae Theatre's New Ideas Festival. The festival actually starts next week, but my play runs as a part of the second week's offerings, from March 18 - 21.

The play is called Chance, and I'm pretty proud of it:

In a future yet to be, a scout ship orbits a distant planet. While the two women inside perform their duties, they reveal to one another more of their selves and their secrets than ever before and along the way, they discover what it really means to take a chance.

I'll be there every night (not sure if I'll be sitting in the audience or not), so let me know if you decide to come out. Your support is always appreciated!

Okay, I'll bite. (Hard.)

It's that time again, and the 'Ask Me ANYTHING!' meme is going around LJ. I figured, since I can't really think of anything to post about at the moment anyway ...

So if you've ever wanted to ask me anything, good bad or indifferent, NSFW or vanilla, positive or negative or anything in between, this is the place to do it. I'll try my best to answer them all.

I'm allowing anonymous comments for this one (and I've unlocked the entry as well), but all comments will be screened.

Keep on keepin' on

Monkeyman had our first public reading last night of my play The Nefarious Bed & Breakfast, with an audience of about 20, 25 people (which is about what I was hoping for). Oddly enough, it was almost entirely people outside the group who RSVP'd through the Facebook event, but these things happen. The point is to get an audience to hear the play.

And I think it went over well. They laughed in many of the right places, and not too many of the wrong places ... they followed the plot (which meanders a bit) without any problems, and a lot of them were eager to know when we'd be planning the full version of the play later on. I think it's fair to say it was well-received.

There was a lot of thoughtful, useful feedback as well -- some of it pointing toward weak points I knew about, but there were some really surprising suggestions here or there that will really give me some ways to make things snappier and draw the audience further into the world of the play. I took a lot of notes, both on their reactions during the reading and their suggestions after.

I don't know when we will be staging the full version, unfortunately -- it's going to be something of an expensive piece to put up -- but we're definitely going to keep working with this one. I thought the actors did a fine job, as well; we'll be lucky if we can get them back when we do have the wherewithal to put this up for real.

Meanwhile, those of us at MMP are waiting with bated breath for the Toronto Fringe lottery on January 27th. Here's hoping we get in ...

Dark. No, REALLY dark.

If you're not in Toronto, you may not know that there was a blackout over a considerable part of the west side of the city last night. The lights are only starting to come back in some places now. This did include Laura and I, we're smack dab in the middle of the affected area. Last night about 10 or so, when I was just thinking about shutting my computer down for the night and Laura was taking a bath, the lights went out, and it was evident pretty quickly that it wasn't just our apartment, or even our building, or even our block.

In that way, it was kind of cool -- looking out my window and seeing this lake of darkness that had overtaken us. And it was bedtime anyway, so it wasn't a huge hassle to just pack it in for the night. (Luckily, while we do rely on electricity for our heating, our apartment is always too warm to begin with -- so we retained a good amount of warmth for the night.)

I was, of course, able to check my email, send to Twitter, and even check the news on my phone -- it's hard to imagine now being as completely out of contact as I would have been before cell phones (or before I had one, at least). I even stayed up for a little bit sending text messages to people outside the danger zone. ;)

This morning, it wasn't quite so cool. The temperature was still okay, but I had to dress, sponge bathe at the sink (no hot water, I wasn't desperate enough to take a cold shower), and get everything ready by flashlight. And of course, the subway wasn't running in my part of the city either -- oddly enough, they need electricity -- so I had to take a series of buses where I'd usually be underground most of the way to work.

But that was kind of neat, too. There would be little outposts of light in the strangest places -- outside Christie subway station a little island in the middle of the street was still decorated with Christmas lights and they were twinkling, and a few blocks later, down a side street I could see a storefront that was lit up. And the bus was never too crowded, because it was way way early, and I wasn't standing outside for too long in the (horrible) cold, and I actually got to work in about the same amount of time it would have taken anyway.

And now, rumour is that the power is back. So I can't complain of any terrible hardships throughout the experience -- it was all pretty neat, actually. Though I would have liked to take a shower when all was said and done. :P

Tweets for Today

My daily ramblings from Twitter (now without replies, to save on confusion):

  • 10:02 Listening to actors all day ... we'll see if I have any time to twitter in between. #
  • 10:34 Annoying director (not mine, another one in the festival) is ANNOYING. #
  • 11:24 Please, producers, do not encourage ANNOYING DIRECTOR. (And do not taunt Happy Fun Ball.) #
  • 13:09 ANNOYING DIRECTOR just made an actor take off her shoes and do her monologue again. He is either insane or a fetishist. #
  • 13:34 It is very, very rare that an actor knows how to end their monologue. Though anything is better than saying, "Scene." #
  • 13:51 There are so many bad plays out there, and so many actors use them for auditions. #
  • 14:22 And now, the headache comes on. :( #
  • 15:33 I guess ANNOYING DIRECTOR feels like he's giving acting lessons during the auditions. Which might be okay, if he were the only director here #
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Tweets for Today

My daily ramblings from Twitter (now without replies, to save on confusion):

  • 13:47 The right decision leaves one at peace, but not necessarily happier. At least, not today. #
  • 17:47 So very very tired and not even at the auditions yet. #
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Tweets for Today

My daily ramblings from Twitter (now without replies, to save on confusion):

  • 09:59 I want to write a series featuring an iconic big guy and end each time with him saying, "Life is never easy for the fat man, my friend ..." #
  • 10:00 (Which isn't meant to reflect my own mental state, it just seems like a cool catchphrase to use.) #
  • 16:12 Yawning ... long audition weeks are as bad as performance weeks for the sleep schedule. #
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Tweets for Today

My daily ramblings from Twitter (now without replies, to save on confusion):

  • 12:12 If I wrote a scene in my zombie apocalypse play where they were trying to teach zombies to do the 'Thriller' dance - would that be too far? #
  • 12:13 (And yes, I'm thinking about my writing projects to stay sane. Though auditions tonight may drive all love for writing from my mind.) #
  • 16:30 Off to auditions tonight for New Ideas ... should be an interesting FIVE DAYS. *yawns* #
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While doing research for the eventual D&D game I'll be starting:


You can give it all the data: line weight, grid size and so on -- and it'll create a printable template for graph paper that matches up.

Man, if they'd had this when I was a kid ... I don't know why (well, I do know why, I am and always have been a geek), but graph paper always seemed like the neatest stuff ever made.

Tweets for Today

My daily ramblings from Twitter (now without replies, to save on confusion):

  • 16:06 at the coffee shop early - writing group later, right now just thinking. #
  • 07:44 Back at work today. Do not know if this will make things better or worse. #
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Tweets for Today

My daily ramblings from Twitter (now without replies, to save on confusion):

  • 09:30 And how come nobody told me that Al Franken finally won! Woohoo! #
  • 09:30 Okay, I guess it's just looking really good, but not quite finished yet: www.sltrib.com/news/ci_11371198 #
  • 01:29 I do not believe there will be any sleep tonight. #
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Tweets for Today

My daily ramblings from Twitter (now without replies, to save on confusion):

  • 20:35 Well, tomorrow really starts a new year for me, with a new writing commitment and all. #

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