No Proof, No Pudding. Guess I Starve…..Again

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Unless you live under a rock, you know that the Dodgers are my favourite baseball team, and have been since I was a kid.  They conduct themselves with class and have been a consistent success on the field and off for years.  When I went to watch a game in Dodger Stadium last year, it was a day before my birthday, on May 24.  That is a moment that took my breath away when I walked into the stadium.  I can see why they call it Blue Heaven.  It’s the most amazing feeling I have ever had in my life.  I don’t see myself ever getting married, or having children, or having a great relationship.  So, I can safely say nothing will ever be able to supplant that moment in my life as one that truly takes your breath away.

I mention this because I have more in common with the Dodgers than at first glance, especially this year.  The Dodgers just completed a series with the Cincinnati Reds at home this past weekend, and got swept.  They not only lost four games in a row, but they were outscored in those games by a margin of 20 – 9.  This, coming from a team that went to game 7 of the World Series last year, whose depth was a hallmark of their success.  The Reds were lead by Canadian Joey Votto, which is great.  But the Dodgers are three wins from the bottom of the National League.  They are tied for last in the National League West with the San Diego Padres.  The Padres.  Now, they just lost the first two games to the Miami Marlins, who are a last place team too.

Kershaw is injured, Taylor and Bellinger have seen their numbers drop, and Turner just returned from a few weeks on the DL after breaking his wrist when hit by a pitch.  (remember how I said I was going to name names?  well…..here they are LOL)  Mind you, they are 1/4 of the way through a season of 162 games.  Time to hit the panic button?  Not at all.  Lots of people aren’t worried about their slow start.  Now, there is one  big difference between the Dodgers and my current situation in life.

Lots of people know the Dodgers will break out of their slump and have a winning record this year, because they have a track record of success.  I on the other hand, do not.  I have lots of people judging me or being hopeful, but not really helping otherwise.  How do I get any confidence at all that things will get better when there is no track record of anything good happening?  This is why recent events in the comedy world have me very disappointed, angry and frustrated.

First of all, let me say to the people who think the solution is as easy as just getting back up and trying again.  Listen, shithead.  I’ve been writing this blog for over six years now.  I have been threatened, slandered and shit on by people who write comments from fake e-mail addresses to particular blog posts.  Classy or what?  Anyhow, if you have taken the time to follow my posts, you will know that nothing ever comes easy for me.  For those of you who think it’s all my fault for where I am, you’re just like my parents, so kindly fuck off.

What’s that?  I should go back to church?  Why?  So I can have people who are self-employed judge me and think it’s all on me to be a more productive and valuable employee.  Really?  Give your head a flippin’ shake, dude.  Is it possible that you do your best and still get fucked over?  Ever hear about the story of Joseph in the Bible?  He did the right things and still he got screwed over again, and again, and again, and again.  Why didn’t you tell Joseph that maybe all the bad stuff happening to him at the time was all his fault too?

It was probably about ten days ago, at least.  There was a message that arrived on my Trevor Dean facebook fan page (by the way, I am the only comedian in this province that is on the most social media platforms…..three Facebook fan pages, this blog and two Twitter accounts).  The message came in mid-afternoon, from the organizer of the Comedy Smackdown show, that was two weeks away.  Keep that in mind, two weeks away.  

So, the message is worded rather ambiguously in asking if I wanted to be a part of the Smackdown show for next Wednesday night (two days before my birthday).

A couple hours later, I get another message saying not to worry, that it’s been taken care of.  But I am more than welcome to take part in the Smackdown competition.  I say this, because I only saw the messages after the second one was sent.  My phone isn’t glued to me all the time and was job hunting that day.

Then, another comedian proudly proclaimed that he had the headlining spot for the Smackdown show next Wednesday.

Yup, you got it.  I was actually offered a headlining spot, the first one ever for meBut, because I took two hours to see the message before I replied, it was given to somebody else.  Keep in mind the first message sent to me was worded so ambiguously that it read like it was a spot in the competition, saying nothing about headlining.

fucked over

again

Keep in mind this is Saskatoon.  There are plenty of options for getting a comic to cover a headliners time.  But seriously, you can’t wait two fucking hours for a reply that is two weeks away yet?  Are you kidding me?  If you ever wondered how much I’m respected within the comedy circles, that’s a great example.  There are others to follow.

The first interview I did was as part of the open mic series.  I’m sure they went down the list of comics and saw I was last and figured well geez, we should make him feel included.  So, I was one of the last comedians interviewed.

At Buds, the host there routinely makes sure that he lets everyone else know I am not very good.  For example, I am always on first or second, and the one time he proclaimed the last few comics of the evening were the ones that actually get paid to do comedy.  I was on second that night and he must have forgotten that I started getting paid gigs at comedy clubs a full two years before anyone else (outside of the headliners).  

I got shit on pretty good with a recent post that I wrote about finally gaining the power over my comedy bully to bash me anymore.  People took offense on this person’s behalf, not bothering to educate themselves on the backstory.  Those are called facts.  Without knowing the whole story, keep your opinions to yourself, because they are idiotic.

I have asked a few comedians to write guest posts for this blog.  Not one of them has ever done it, yet they talk about how great of a read it is.  Yeah, give me a fucking break.  If it was anybody else writing this, other comics would have written posts by now.

I don’t get asked to perform at shows outside of open mics, ever.  The one time they tried to do this for me, was at Buds on my birthday two years ago.  Never got a cake, never got a card.  Three friends showed up, and the host put me on first (disrespectful), and the show was billed as just having a couple comics on, next thing you know every comic in the city wanted stage time and a fight almost erupted on stage with one of the comics.  Yeah, you really know how to make a guy feel valued.  Holy shit.

I started Carnac two years ago and got accused of stealing material.

I tried to start a writing group before the Sunday night open mic, and nobody showed up.  People know I have received comedy coaching, but that doesn’t seem to matter.  The two guys that did ask about it, couldn’t be bothered to show up for it.  Again, very fucking classy.

When it comes to opening acts that are needed for longer than 10 minutes, I am one of a few guys who can do this.  But, I have never been asked by any headliners to join them.  Never.  They will ask other headliners to join them instead.

My return to the Laugh Shop a few months back wasn’t promoted by other comics.  If it was any other local comedian on stage, other comics would have helped spread the word about the show by sharing the event or something.  Nope.  They couldn’t be bothered.

Former comedian that used to “run” the local scene kept telling audiences on numerous occasions that I would never be doing comedy in Saskatoon ever again.

Despite public speaking ability and running karaoke for several years being an MC/host, I’ve never been asked to host an open mic when the hosts were shorthanded, yet when I have had opportunities presented to me for shows, they were the first ones I contacted to share the stage time with.  The shows never materialized, but it’s the principle of the thing.  I put others ahead of myself, wanting to share an opportunity that came my way.  The original open mic at The Woods Alehouse I ran when the establishment first opened, and they accepted my invitation to perform.  What do they say about good karma?  Who gives a shit, because it hasn’t been returned to me in this case.

Yes, of the current crop of weekly performers, I have done the most and have absolutely jack fucking shit to show for it.  I guess that’s the thanks I get when a newbie comedian tells me that other local comics look up to me, yeah.  They look up to me so much they choose to ignore me.  Great times.

Here is why all of this is so disappointing to me.

For those of you who aren’t aware, good breaks don’t come my way.  A pastor at Faith Alive mentioned that I have made baby steps of improvement and that’s all.  Yeah, because anything major that would amount to a breakthrough or good fortune never happens to me.  After my trial ended and I was free to go, I got fucked over from one job I had for two years.  Then, was on EI for 1.5 years before I got a job out of town, only to get fucked over again and called dumb.  The next job I kept to this day, and the full time job I started I had to quit because I was being micromanaged and treated in a disrespectful and condescending fashion.

The longest job I have ever held was back in my early 20s for 4.5 years.  Fast forward, and I am on the cusp of turning 45 next Friday.  I still have the part time job, but only at a couple days per week.  I can’t pay my rent and expenses on $12.40/hr., even though I really like the job (and by the way, I enjoy the work because my co-workers really do work as a team, and the managers help their employees instead of throwing them under the bus).

There are many jobs I have applied for that I have the ability and experience to accomplish, but I never get considered, not even a phone call.  I probably won’t get EI from this job I just left, and rent will be due.  Also, the front wheel bearings on both sides of my vehicle are looser than Justin Trudeau’s ethical standards.  They will need to be replaced, but with what money?  How can I afford a few hundred dollars to fix it when I am over $15k in debt still with no end in sight of being able to pay it off?  I have never had a job that’s paid over 30k/year.  It has been three years since I have had a job where I could access benefits (my current p/t job benefits kick in after six months).

Everyone around me seems to get the breaks.  I’ve never had a new vehicle, ever.  The newest is like several years old.  My parents talk negatively about me, don’t support me, speak bad about me going to church yet they get their needs met and get the breaks.  Yet, I went to church, tried to do the right things and I keep continually getting fucked over, while people in the church look at me like it’s all my fault, like if I just trust God more things will be better.

Sorry, but that ain’t happening at the moment.  I need more than someone to hope and do nothing else.  I need someone to give me a break.  You can use that garbage about how it’s all up to me, but if you think about it, anything you achieve in life always has somebody on the other end to help you with it.  Nobody gets anything done on their own.  Then a fellow comic is telling me there is a show that I would be a perfect headliner for.  I’m skeptical about this because the only reason I heard about it is because I was constantly checking in on this person to see if they really were going to write a blog post for me or not.  In other words, if I didn’t hound them to write something, I seriously doubt that they would have messaged me out of the blue to tell me about this opportunity.  Take a look at the above examples of how I have been disrespected and fucked over.  What evidence is there that things could be any different?  Well, there isn’t so no sense getting my hopes up.  Not that there are any to get up in the first place.

So, when life is in the fucking toilet, which it always seems to be for me, I get this glimmer of hope making me think that something in comedy will come my way that would help to raise my spirits a little bit and give me the momentum to approach my job hunting and life with a bit more optimism.  Then I get fucked over for this Smackdown shit, and it makes me wonder why I even bother trying.  Yeah, I should keep trying.  Yeah.  You get fucked over and disrespected every time for years and see if you approach things with that kind of attitude.  I guarantee you that you won’t.  It’s funny too, that the guys from church who will judge me are the ones who are self-employed and have no idea what it’s like to fail and be in abject poverty.  They are too busy running a successful business and having their needs met to realize that there are assholes in the world that beat good people down for no reason, other than due to their own insecurities.

Next Friday is my birthday.  I will be 45.  It’s one of those unofficial milestone birthdays I suppose, but what kind of a milestone is it when all I have around me are examples and a history of nothing but failure, trying to do the right thing and help others only to get jack shit in return?

The only thing I received for my birthday last year was a birthday card from a friend of mine from the Friendship Inn.  She’s asked me if there I have anything planned for my birthday this year, as she wants to take me to lunch.

It’s really disappointing that despite all I have tried to do for others, that’s the only person who has offered to do anything on my birthday.  It says a lot about who she is as a person.  She doesn’t just tell me I am appreciated when I volunteer there, she’s willing to show it as well.

I am the only one who knows what I am truly capable of.  Everyone around me just sees the failure and the big target on my back.  When I come home, I come home to an empty house.  I have nobody here to talk to, nobody to encourage or support me.  All of you who are going to bash me for that comment already have support in your corner, in the form of supportive family (I don’t have), supportive spouse and/or kids/relatives (don’t have that either).  Nobody has ever really believed in my ability to do anything, as my long list of getting fucked over, bullied and failures will attest to.  The people who will get on my case for being this glum don’t know what it’s like to live 905 of your life alone with zero support from anyone close to you.  Getting kicked in the teeth every time, then picking yourself up to move forward sounds easy, but that is about all it does.  It sounds easy.  It’s hard to do when you wake up in the morning with no place to go for a full time job, nothing to eat and very little money for gas or to get your vehicle fixed, let alone pay for its plates for the month.

I feel that I have nothing to look forward to.  No sense in getting my hopes up for a job.  I don’t get excited when I get a job interview.  Isn’t that sad?  If some of you in the comedy scene would get your heads out of your asses long enough to realize that I could use some help or a good break along the way, it would go a long way.

I sincerely get the feeling that when I go out to celebrate my birthday by myself, I won’t get a card, a cake or anything aside from a happy birthday.  My birthday might be a reminder that I still exist, but most of you will forget about me and the fact I could use a helping hand once my birthday has come and gone.  My family won’t want to celebrate with me for dinner that day because I had to leave my last job.  They don’t understand that it’s not all my fault.  They’ve never worked for an asshole boss or a condescending employer, so they don’t understand, let alone try to ask questions.  They just assume, accuse and judge.

I thought after all these years of trying to be a good person and helping others, that I would at least get something in return from somebody.  Instead, I get nothing back.  Put yourself in my shoes.  How would you feel if you never get a break and get nothing in return despite all that you do?

I don’t know how many different ways I can ask for help and still get no response from anyone.  I thought that I had people in my corner.  I guess that I should know better when nobody shows up to attend an open mic that I am a part of.  Guess I will go out for a 45th birthday drink by myself, because I can’t count on any of you to do the right thing when it really matters the most.  History has proven that fact repeatedly.

What do you think?

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