The End Of The Line For Trevor Dean?

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December 21st, 2011 was the first posting for The Stand-Up Diaries of Trevor Dean.  As of today, 2,906 views and 16 countries later, could this be the end of the line for Saskatoon’s only homeless stand-up comic?

Let me first say that I am truly amazed to the scope of which people are follwing my blog.  It’s like Dez Reed said, he mentioned that my blog is a good read because it’s honest, and because I’m not necessarily setting the world of comedy on fire.  If I had from the start, then the blog would be basically self-serving and insincere.  But that’s far from it.  It’s honest.  It’s who I am, and that won’t change.

When I first started on this journey, I had absolutely no idea what I was in for.  Well, I kinda had ideas I thought comedy would be like, but they paled in comparison to what actually happened.  For the first several months most of the shows were at Beilys, in front of crowds that for the most part were not “true comedy crowds”.  The one time I finally wrapped my head around what the crowd finally wanted in terms of performing, I ended up trashing a friend, and getting trashed myself for the rest of the show.

It’s true, the growth of my act has been slow, at least compared to what Dez would like.  He’s the type of person who doesn’t have a large attention span, so when you are onstage you either have to “knock it out of the park”, or show him that you at least have the p0tential to do something good down the road.  He once asked the booker for David Letterman what to do with me because he couldn’t figure out (Dez) what to do with me in terms of slotting me into a show.  This booker told Dez to relax and not worry.  Sometimes he said, it takes years for guys to get their act together.  Dez has the type of personality that appeared to succeed in comedy right from the start.  He started getting t.v. gigs after only six months on the job.  Anybody who knows him, or who’s heard him speak of comedy or give advice to up and coming comics, can see this firsthand.  I suppose that the majority of comics on the local scene are guys where you can look at them and have an idea of who they are onstage, or about the message they are trying to get across.  With me, unfortunately, I’ve had some good nights and some bad ones, it’s been inconsistent at best.  But the number of good sets (that don’t bomb) are getting better. 

There was the comedy competition for the newer comics, where on the night with the smallest audience, after placing last every other night, how I managed to shock the world and finish first, valuting myself into contention for prize money on the final night.  I’ve also had a set in Martensville during the competition where Junior Kush laughed, I mean really laughed at my stuff for the first time.  Maybe it had to do with the fact I was three sheets to the wind that night?  There were also the nights during the competition like Specklebelly’s, where nobody laughed and I had guys in the audience beaking me off. 

Then there was our saving grace, the comedy club that bore Dez Reed’s name.  It was great for all of us because we finally were able to perform for comedy audiences who were there to see comedy.  It made performing fun, and Dez brought guys together to make this comedy club a team atmosphere, where the comics input is asked for and taken into account.  Ask some of the headliners who pass through the club how many operate like this in Canada, and there aren’t very few. 

The first time I was onstage at the comedy club was on my birthday, and my friend managed to ruin that night for me.  But I kept coming back.  I have seen comics start up, Dez gives them stage time, then they quit.  I’m not one of those people.  My dad taught us to finish what we start, and as long as you do something, to at least try your best.  When my dad started his company, he didn’t take a vacation (day off) for the first 13 years because it was just himself, until I started to work for him the first time.  When he started the business, it was in the basement of our house, with a filing cabinet, rented storage space and one of those ancient tele-type machines. 

My dad quit a good job as a purchaser with a wholesaler in town after many years because….well, let’s just say that my dad is the most honest person I know, and for him to up and quit a job, there was a good reason for it.  Sure, we’ve had our differences over the years, and they don’t really support my comedy endeavour, but at the same time, my parents DID NOT raise me to be a quitter.

But having said all of that, I have decided to shut down my comedy for the rest of this year.  If my personal situation wasn’t what it is right now, it would be easier for me to move forward with my comedy despite all of the shit I’ve had to endure.  But a couple weeks ago I realized that until I can get a job, and get a place of my own, that those two things weigh on my mind heavily enough to prevent me from going onstage anymore this year.  I am usually pretty patient and let a lot of shit slide, and I somehow thought that by continuing to pursue comedy that it would be the one good thing, or give me some encouragement from a good set, to have the confidence to move forward and get the rest of my life back on track, kind of like a catalyst, you know?

Unfortunately, the more I tried to get involved in the comedy scene, the more I tried to get some consistent success onstage to help propel me forward, the more it did the opposite.

Make no mistake, I am not quitting comedy.  FUCK THAT

As I mentioned before, I am not a quitter.  I wouldn’t give the satisfaction to my critics of giving up.  On the one hand, I’d like to go into detail about what happened a couple weeks ago that made this decision one that had to be made, but it would serve no purpose.  Only the people who I consider to be my close friends, and those the comedy stage with will know.  If you understood what I have had to deal with, it migiht be an easy decision for you to make as well.  Let’s just leave it at that.

There is a lot more I could speak to on this subject, but it’s not worth it.  I’m tired…..tired of repeating how I feel and of the bullshit I have had to endure in these last several weeks and going back further than that, the last few months.  Thanks to everyone for your support.  Stay tuned, I might be back onstage in 2013.


Trevor Dean


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