Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Audition updates from last week

Last week was crazy (good) on the acting front -- three auditions in 4 days.

Info has started to trickle in on some of them. I'm guessing I didn't get the Sam's Club national gig I auditioned for Saturday, because Action Figure's sign up sheet requested our mobile numbers "because we'll be casting this weekend" (even though the thing doesn't shoot until June 30). And I haven't heard anything.

I did get an Email yesterday for the FirstCare gig that said, "If you are receiving this message, you did not get a callback ..." (and it had a frowny face; my agent is very empathetic). But I heard today Action Figure is going to go with a new concept, scrapping the last round of auditions, and doing it again. So there's a chance.

I haven't heard from the Flatland voice over audition yet, so there's stil hope on that front, too.

And believe it or not, 1 out of 3 would be rocking stats for an actor. Acting is 95% perseverance, as far as I'm concerned ...

Monday, May 29, 2006

Moving, Days #3 and #4

Moving Day #3 wasn't that hard, mainly because I got started too late to do
much useful (delayed because of a late-running audition and spending waaaay
too much time/money at Lowe's; those guys have got a brilliant market
concept). Anyway, yesterday was mainly replacing nobs and fixtures to dress
up the place.

Sunday was more productive, if tedious ( and though still with a late
start). But I did fix some plumbing, hang accordion doors, add baseboards
and quarter-round, patch (cut, fit, and mud) drywall, water the lawns, take
out the trash (at both houses), get another load from the old house to the
new house, and buy a coffee table and a bunch of shirts for auditioning
this summer.

The shirts are for auditioning. The coffee table is for sitting at while
I'm not auditioning ...

It's 2 a.m. I hurt all over, I'm tired, and I'm feeling kind of pissy.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

That was a fun audition ...

That was a fun audition.

I just finished an audition for a Sam's Club SAG national commercial
(cha-ching), a la Action Figure, and it was a lot of fun.

I like improv auditions. I don't like having to mime/mock actions with
pre-scripted dialog, but that's what is audition was. That said, it was
fun. I was miming throwing stuff into the back of an imaginary car for an
imaginary camping trip; adjusting the rearview mirror as I yelled jovially
at my nonexistent kids; throwing the car into reverse and backing over a
curb; trying to get my wife (a la actress and audition partner Elise
Ballard as excited about my insanity as I was).; etc.

We got a good several takes, which always makes me happy.

I think the director was Matt Hovis, but I'm embarrassed to say I'm not

Y'know, This whole week has been really good on the acting front. Having
three auditions in the space of 4 days has really loosened my up on the
audition front. The timing couldn't be suckier (in the middle of the house
move), but it's not like I'm going to turn down opportunities to audition
for Jeffrey Travis, Beth Sepko, or Action Figure.

On the move activities ...

I'm so tired

Yesterday's Moving Day #2 was brutal. I took a few loads solo in my truck
while waiting for friends.

And I have some rocking friends. They spent their Friday evening to help me
move. Very generous.

I think the suckiest part was unloading the attic. It was literally like
120-degrees, and I was handing heavy stuff down to the guys, squatting over
the access opening, trying not to drop stuff on them. I woke up so many
times last night, just hurting.

Now, I'm sitting on wooden stairs, waiting for my shot at a a national
audition that was supposed to start at 10:40. And I'm not even on deck yet
(if I was on deck, you wouldn't be getting this).

I need to get done, so I can begin Moving Day #3.

My ass is so sore...

Friday, May 26, 2006

Another audition for Action Figure Films

I had an audition for a local(ish) health care commercial, with Action Figure, a cool little production company for whom I've auditioned before.

Not only did I get to read for the parts for which I was "supposed" to audition, but I saw there was a decent chunk of AVO dialog, so I asked if I could read for that, too, and they generously accomodated.

Then, while leaving the audition, I got a call from my rocking agent (it's her birthday tomorrow, send her lots of love -- and some tangibles), with another audition with Action Figure tomorrow, this time for Wal-Mart (my first audition for them was for Sam's Club).

This so rocks, but is seriously hectic in the middle of Move Day #2 ...

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

I had a fun voice audition today

I had a fun voice audition today for the animated version of Flatland, the book by Edwin Abbott Abbott.

The book is great literature, brain brushing on the science and mathematics, side, and has a good message about logic, philosophy, challenging the unseen, and pragmatic faith.

The film's directed (and co-written) by Jeffrey Travis, who was there for the audition. I got to ready for Travis a few weeks ago during Will Wallace's one-day workshop.

I've been working the solid little script for a while, and got to read for about 7 fun, incidental little parts. Besides workshopping the script and characters, I've been running around with a "Roll'n'Ruler", which is a nifty little gadget I think I got in the 80s that "replaces protractor, compass, ruler, triangles, T-Square, Ellipse templates, french curves & parallel ruler."

Basically, it's a cool gimmick I've been using to draw little geometric shapes on flat surfaces everywhere as I prepared for the audition. And I took it into the booth. For grounding.

Anyway, fun audition. Like I said, about 7 characters, and about 18 core voices, then variations off of those. Lot of fun, and the guys were really easy going about the whole thing.

Here's hoping ...

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Yellow light district

This guy I know is a really talented photographer, and his latest great Photoshoot cracks me up.

You can check his stuff at Flickr, with "Yellow Light District - 2" being my favorite.

He's doing this for a contest, so if you want to support him, check out his blog for registration/voting instructions for

I own a new house!

I closed on a new house yesterday.

This is exciting and unsettling at the same time.

The only thing that makes the phrase "I own a new house!" less exciting is its corollary: "I own an old house, too."

Yeesh. Time to sell that bad boy.

So, if you're looking to move into Round Rock and want a great starter home with easy access to 1325/MoPac, IH-35, and McNeil, please contact me and make a ridiculously huge cash offer.


Friday, May 19, 2006

(in bed)

Let's face it -- I'm pretty immature.

One regular exhibition of my lack of maturity is with fortune cookies (wait, it's not as bad as it sounds).

I like fortune cookies that are (A) Genuine fortunes (none of this platitudes crap), or, failing (A), then (B) Funny when appended with the phrase, "(In bed.)"

This particular fortune, while not necessarily the former, is definitely the latter:
Among the lucky, you are the chosen one. (In bed.)
I take pride in knowing not only am I "Among the lucky", and "the chosen one", but among the People of Luck, I am the Lucky Chosen One in a very, very important context.

Which makes me better than Neo.

(In bed.)

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

I was trapped in my house this morning ...

I'm trying to sell my current house, which means (with my current string of "luck") things are going terribly bad.

I had to repair the foundation, which included them putting a support pier under my drain line, which cracked it (of course). I had to have a plumber come and fix the line, and now there's a 4-foot hole up and under my foundation, which needs to be filled (understandably).

Since plumbers are incredibly expensive as diggers, I told them thank you very much, and hired someone else to bring dirt in (the excavated clay won't pack back in; back to the "luck" thing), fill in the hole, and haul off the old dirt.

This was supposed to start tomorrow.

Imagine my surprise when I opened my garage door today and saw a mound of dirt blocking my exit. The only way out was going to be to plow through part of the mound, up and over my lawn (avoiding the retaining wall), and over the curb into the street.

I called the guy and registered by concern, which he genuinely seemed at a loss to understand. I told him I was worried about damaging the lawn, since I'm trying to sell the house (ironic, I know, since there's a freaking huge hole in my front yard).

So asked him if that did happen, would he be willing to help me re-sod the damaged area.

His response?

"You want me to come get the dirt and we call it quits right now, Bud?"
Uh, that seemed a little unwarranted. Especially since he's supposed to be providing me service.

So I talked him down (he never apologised for any of this), then made the Guiness Book of World Records billion point turn inside my garage to get out, over the dirt, miss the retaining wall, miss the mailbox, over the curb and into the street. And there are only minor indents in the lawn (thank goodness we haven't had any rain lately).

Ah well. If it's not this it's something else, and no use getting myself worked up ...

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Recognizing Diversity ...

"Recognizing diversity" should not mean "lowering the bar".

Loki's a nubby!

OK, I'm not a big believer in "luck", "chance", "fate", or their variants (though I've got empirical knowledge of the power and applicability of "randomness" and "chaos").

However, I'm beginning to wonder if my dog, Loki (and/or I), is/am cursed.

Loki's already gone through a lot, but last week, she had to go in for an emergency tail amputation. The details leading up to the surgery aren't pleasant, so let's just summarize them as follows:
Crate tail. Gangrene. Dogs lack the cognizant abilities of humans.
The net result being Loki now looks like a stocky, brutish vizsla.

So, not only is Loki not getting cool new stuff (like an anti-cat rocket tail) for the small fortune getting pumped into her, but she's getting body parts taken away (so, far, the spleen and tail).

I wonder if I should have asked them to keep her pieces, so I can build a back-up dog ...

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

E3 2006

I'm a video and PC gamer, so if I'm not writing here this week, it's probably because I'm posting like mad on my video game blog for the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3).

Check it out:

Fun stuff ...

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Selfish birthday weekend: Day #4

The Blow-By-Blow:

Selfish birthday weekend: Day #4

Yesterday (Monday) was "Selfish Birthday Weekend Day 4", and the official end to my birthday 4-day weekend o' playing.

It started out disappointingly enough. Even though I as on vacation, I got hassled by work (for something "needed to be fixed right away", and did not need my involvement), and another run to the vet for poor ol' Loki.

Things picked up after that, as I was able to attend the last part of a very special someone's performance, a Kerbey Lane late breakfast lunch with loved ones, the back home for a bunch o' blogging and video game related shenanigans.

I treated myself to another 3-plus mile run, which sucked with the humidity (breathing was a chore), but I was able to get in the zone and mentally story board a key scene from one of my multi-IPs, MoH.

Then, it was more video game semi-journalistic work before acting buddies Aaron Hallaway (his headshots are wonky on the Agency site -- use the one on the far right for reference) and Adam Langley kidnapped me for a birthday celebration.

It started out with a "mobile cave of manliness", which consisted of the passenger side of the car filled with black balloons and streamers -- kind of a Batcave, but cooler, because it was mobile (if not necessarily safe).

We hit Fox & Hound for dinner, beer and darts (I sucked at the first game, and I suspect they let me win the second), then to Draught House for a grudge match to finish a pint of Arrogant Bastard (that stuff'll slap you around if you're not eating a meal at the same time), followed by a smoother (and more appreciated) hefeweizen. And good, important conversation with guys I think the world of.

Then we were off home, which I made more interesting by popping the balloons (about 100) at opportune times (like when changing lanes or entering/exiting the freeway). There was a brief stop at a Whataburger when I mentioned I've been in Texas 9 years and never eaten at one (and I was riding with "Mr. Whataburger" Langley). They're honey chicken biscuit is good.

And I got another Xbox 360 wireless controller (suh-weet!) -- and a jigsaw puzzle, plumbing goop, and a prize fighter belt. You kind of have to be us to get it.

Great, great evening, and a great way to end a birthday weekend.

Today, of course, hurts -- but it's worth it.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Selfish birthday weekend: Day #3

The Blow-By-Blow:

Selfish birthday weekend: Day #3

Yesterday (Sunday) was "Selfish Birthday Weekend dday 3", and my official birthday.

I spent a great lazy morning with coffee, a fried egg and bagel sandwich, the Sunday paper, and several more issues of the New Avengers comic book -- which I now have to stop reading, because it referenced the recent Secret Wars mini-series, which I have, but have not read. Damn crossovers!

Then it was off to lunch with Loved Ones at Pok-e-Joe's (sorry, Vegans), to Best Buy to treat myself to a Wacom graphics tablet (for that top-secret project I keep teasing about), Fry's to replace all of old-gen Xbox controllers with dirt-cheap Bluetooth controllers, then home to enjoy some more relaxing, reading, and playing in the back yard.

Then dinner at Buca di Beppo with Loved Ones again for a great birthday dinner.

Then home for some more Biz work, and to watch Yours Mine & Ours. Really nice birthday. And I got another Xbox 360 wireless controller, the first season of 24 on DVD, and another Captain America toy.

"What's my age again?"

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Selfish birthday weekend: Day #2

The Blow-By-Blow:

Selfish birthday weekend: Day #2

Saturday was official Day #2 of my planned selfish Birthday weekend, and I'm having a good run of it.

Slept in, read quite a bit, then was off to Cracker Barrel for brunch(ish) before heading home to do a bunch of blogging (Acting x3, Video Gaming, etc.).

I then got caught up on a bunch of video game videos, game art, interviews, and a couple of demos, before treating myself to another 3+ mile run.

Then it was off for a get together with a ton of friends, and a very sweet happy birthday cake and ice cream episode.

Then home to get caught up on some TV (The Apprentice and a couple of Justice League Unlimited episodes -- and "Ancient History" was really lacking in continuity and importance and voice acting), some more reading, and bed.

Great, great weekend.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Selfish birthday weekend: Day #1

The Blow-By-Blow: Selfish birthday weekend: Day #1

Yesterday, which I took off from work, was official Day #1 of my planned selfish B-Day weekend.

Not bad.

My plan was to "sleep in", which didn't work out quite as planned. I had this goal of 10 a.m., but as the clock crawled past 9 a.m., I was about crawling out of skin with boredom, so I nixed that plan.

Next on the agenda was to research Cinco de Mayo, part of the reason I took Friday off.

I'm an all-American mutt, but the two strongest parts of my heritage are Irish and Mexican (which means I drink a lot and then pick fights with myself). Seriously, though, I wanted to remind myself of the importance of the holiday -- not because I claim any credit for the actions of that side of my heritage (I personally believe no one can take credit for heroic actions unless they performed said actions), but because I think it's important to understand specific examples of heroic tenacity and sacrifice.

This day is about 4,500 Mexicans defeating 6,500 French soldiers, through "a combination of their tenacity, inhospitable terrain, and a stampede of cattle set off by local peasants". Amazing.

Then, it was off to catch Mission: Impossible III -- really good movie.

Then, it was off to Fry's to treat myself to Halo 2:Original Soundtrack Volume 2, which is (for me), much better than Volume 1. Then to Dragon's Lair to visit my oft-abandoned comic book pull box.

Cinco de Mayo dinner was at Chuy's (of course) with loved ones, then home, where we caught up on recorded TV for the week, and I further treated myself to the first 10 issues of New Avengers.

Man, Brian Michael Bendis knows dialog ...

Free Comic Book Day #2

As part of Free Comic Book Day, I headed over first to Dragon's Lair, then to my local Hastings.

I picked up the standard freebies for this year (X-Men Runaways, The Simpsons, etc.), and Dragon's Lair was throwing in a grab bag of back issues, too, so I picked up a bunch of one-shots (including a Marvel Team-Up with Captain America and Black Widow; I don't like Scott Kolins art, but I do like Studio F's coloring).

Free Comic Book Day!

Today is National Free Comic Book Day!

Head over to a local comic book store -- most staff are excited to expand people's understanding of illustrated literature, and can make recommendations based on your tastes.

Have fun!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

And so it begins ...

Last year's birthday was OK, but ended up being kind of mheh.

This year, Cinco de Mayo and my birthday hit the same weekend, so I've decided to have an admittedly selfish take, and treat myself to 4 days of general me-ness.

And it started out well today, before my 4-day mini holiday has even officially begun.

My boss got me a massage, which I don't do, but ended up a really a good way to start the day. Plus, I was really productive today, and got a nice card from my past and current teams, before my current team took me out to an early happy hour ("early" at BigHugeCorp being after 5 p.m.). One Shiner Bock, two Dos XX, one Guinness, an order of bacon jalapeno poppers, and 64-plus ounces of water later (and a great, fascinating conversation about the intricacies of the Lebanese Freedom Fighters told from a first-hand experience), it was time to head home.

I treated myself to a 3-plus mile run, at that white witching hour of early dusk in the Central Texas early summer where the fireflies kept me company as I made aggressive work of my circuit (thanks in part to Living Color and Method Man), with the tail end of my run superceded by one of those instant, impressive, massive thunder and lightning storms unique to this part of the world.

I learned a while ago that entitlement attitudes are pretty stupid, so I realize nothing else may go my way for the rest of the weekend.

And if today is all I get, I'm really OK with that. Great way to start the weekend ...

The spork...

Someone invented the spork. That someone was brilliant. Or insane. Not sure which.

Han Solo shot first!

The mega Empire that is Lucasfilm just announced the original (non mucked-with) Star Wars trilogy will be available this fall!

Fox Home Entertainment will be releasing individual, 2-disc sets each for Star Wars; The Empire Strikes Back; and Return of the Jedi. Each set will have the 2004 digitally remastered (some would say, bastardized) version of the movie, and the original theatrical edition of the film (in glorious Dolby 2.0). We get to watch Star Wars as it was in 1977 (and Empire in 1980 and Jedi in 1983).

Check out the news at

And, since it's Lucasfilm, it's not going to be just the trilogy released.

Also to be released at the same time will be LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy, the sequel to LEGO Star Wars, one of the best concepts since combining peanut butter and chocolate.

There will also be a new line of toys from Hasbro and LEGO, a new book (Darth Bane: Path of Destruction by Drew Karpyshyn, set 1,000 years before Episode IV/A New Hope), and the book, The Making of Star Wars: A New Hope (both titles to be published by Ballantine Del Rey).

And that's not even talking about the CGI series currently under development (and under wraps) at Lucasfilm Shanghai, and the live-action TV series slated for 2007 (which has got to be better than the 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special).

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

FedEx vs UPS

Hmm . . . looks like FedEx got the prime spot. Wonder if UPS is ticked. That would be a good rumble.