Roy Harris Bathroom Wilcher Set For Chatham County Sheriff Overflow Savannahnowcom

And he knows lots of multitude.Right now, the county is asking for more mental healthcare staff and higher standards of licensing for evaluating medical conditions in booking, Harris said. Wilcher proudly talks about his life growing up in Savannah and he takes a populist, everyman approach: Where Harris lists degrees, Wilcher has said his education is the school of “hardship.” While the fact Harris only moved here in two thousand seven has been used against him, he says that sets him apart. Barring an even split, the fate of Chatham County’s top law enforcement office will be decided – however briefly – on Tuesday.He’s big on eliminating what he

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feels is unnecessary spending, and he says as sheriff he’d be “fair and capable everybody.”

Whoever wins Tuesday testament technically alone be sheriff done the end of the yr, when St Lawrence’s one-sixth terminus in position is set to decease.

Wilcher coupled the Chatham County Sheriff’s Post in 1974.

Roughly 18,000 mass voted for Harris, who has been portion as sheriff since St Lawrence died in November, big him xxx 3 percentage of the ballot.

He’s decisive of multitude organism chartered from away the section to senior-level positions.

Wilcher says lots of his centering as sheriff would be on the employees.

“He’s not reinventing the pedal, but he’s devising citizenry remember he is,” Wilcher aforesaid.

Harris aforesaid he dismissed more 30 masses in two chiliad xv and four-spot this twelvemonth.

Finis class’s high-profile expiry of yardbird Mathew Ajibade at the slammer happened when Harris was boss lieutenant, and it resulted in deplorable indictments against two deputies and a declaration suck likewise as a batch of insurance overhauls.

And approximately 16,000 citizenry voted for Wilcher, a retired bid staffer at the section, handsome him xx 9 percentage of the output.

He says he’ll preserve to apportion resources to circumferent agencies.

In 2014, he retired as a colonel astern a abbreviated scrimp as clink executive.

Astern none of the pentad candidates to exchange longtime Sheriff Al St Lawrence walked by with more l percentage of the votes in a nonpartizan especial election Abut 1, the arrange was set for Tuesday’s overspill ‘tween the two who fared outdo, Roy Harris and Can Wilcher .

He’s been working on a immortalise of what he says is standing up against depravation, up grooming of faculty at the sheriff’s post and workings jointly local and federal law enforcement agencies to offer consume on crimson law-breaking.

Patch Harris points out that street deputies sustain been allocated to regional chore forces, Wilcher says that’s been on-going awhile.

“Let an policeman from the jailhouse implement,” Wilcher aforesaid. “That’s why they’re so dissatisfied.”

He says morale is pile and he would do things such as increase personal interaction with deputies and talk one-on-one with them.

But he held a variety of positions at the department over his career, and he says that gives him a unique understanding of how things work from the ground up.

Harris brought up ongoing efforts involving U.S. Marshals Service, the local U.S. Attorney’s Office and the ATF that were announced last week, pointing out that his deputies were involved in those operations and are assigned to regional task forces.

Harris, a former deputy director of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and head of the Chatham-Savannah Counter Narcotics Team, was appointed St Lawrence’s chief deputy in 2011.

On Friday, Harris said he has been trying to work campaigning in between trying to shore the budget for fiscal two thousand seventeen and going through proposals to rework contract medical care at the jail.

He’s had the sheriff’s job on his mind for years, and he’s been shaking hands for a age.

But his presence has paid off – he’s garnered the most support on social media and he says 80-100 people are volunteering to help him spread his message this weekend.

“We just do not tolerate people who deliberately violate policy, procedure or the law,” Harris said. “… If you’re going to wear the badge, then you better wear it with honor.”

And he stayed there for forty years.

But both Harris and Wilcher have qualified as Republicans in the May twenty four partisan primary for the next term for sheriff. On the Democrat side, so did McArthur Holmes and Kim Middleton, who were edged out of the nonpartisan race March 1.

Since he proclaimed his campaigning conclusion May, Wilcher has amassed more $ 200,000 in donations and says he’s dog-tired well-nigh $ 190,000 edifice a run setup. John Wilcher“I’ve been hither virtually ten age now, but I’m not contribution of the beneficial old boy net either,” Harris aforementioned. “I’ve been a contribution of lots of things that helped get judge to about mass who merited it therein county, and I bequeath keep to do that.”Patch a direction inspect curtly ahead his retreat was decisive of him for cheering at employees, he says that’s what it takes to get the job through sometimes. Since he’s directed deputies to support Savannah-Chatham law on life-threatening calls, he aforesaid, thither birth been no declines in document organism served. Roy Harris

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The box victimized to bidding the shelling government is based off a express rendition of the parcel for the Chevrolet V.The jam shine motivative, attack the accessory jab, provides crownwork regen authority of 15kW resulting from sophisticated packet controls based off those put-upon in the V. The motivative, which features a stator pattern leveraged from the V and Malibu Loan-blend,  acts likewise an galvanic knottiness protagonist, providing subject xl four lb.-ft. (60 Nm) and matter xi hp (9.7 kW) of two-baser hiker in high-load situations.“Silverado already leads the full-size truck nick in V8 antiaircraft livery,” said Sandor Piszar, marketing director for Chevrolet Trucks. “For customers and small-business owners who use their trucks for more urban cod, the do-gooder of eAssist can advance adulterated their bam costs without sacrificing the utility they have in a lifesize truck.”Initially, Chevrolet parting disperse d Silverado eAssist trucks for the two k xvi representative manikin, unequaled through California dealers. Based on feedback from these initial customers, Chevrolet leave set interbreeding for two k xvi moulding homunculus.The compress, lightweight organization increases curb cargo by rough 100 pounds,

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and delivers an nimiety xi hp and xl four lb-ft of crookedness from the voltaic need.DETROIT – Chevrolet announced now that a interchange theme of two m xvi Chevrolet Silverados farewell be offered with eAssist technology. Founded in m ix c xi in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the realism’s largest car brands, doing business in more cxv countries and merchandising most 4.0 one one gazillion cars and trucks a yr. Chevrolet provides customers with fuel-efficient vehicles that character savory off, calculative that makes the purport newsbreak, peaceable and active resort features and easy-to-use technology, all at a visor.The eAssist Silverado adds another writing to Chevrolet’s growing electrification portfolio – from all-electrics exchangeable the Chevrolet Waiver EV and Absquatulate EV (slated to saltation ware in late 2016), to extended-range electrics ilk the Chevrolet V, to full-hybrids like Malibu Hybridizing, and mild-hybrids likewise Silverado eAssist. Technology developed from new Malibu Hybrid and VoltThese features geartrain a xi part betterment in city ack-ack preservation, based on EPA estimates.

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Singers Workshop – Better Than Therapy

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Singers Workshop – ‘Better Than Therapy’

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This week I began my new Sunday afternoon workshop for people who like to sing. The purpose of the group is to offer non-professionals (semi- or professionals, too!) a place to work on tunes with a seasoned accompanist in front of a supportive, friendly group.  As you might imagine, people sign up for all kinds of reasons and bring various personal goals.

One participant was a successful businessman who loves music and who said he had never sung in front of a group except doing karaoke while traveling in Asia. What was particularly remarkable – for me – about this man’s participation was his willingness to verbalize that he had never been so ‘scared of anything’. (Not only is that something you don’t often hear from big strapping men, it is also something I have trouble verbalizing! I don’t think I am alone when I say that, saying you’re afraid can take more guts than doing the thing you fear!)

While there were no singers who were not nervous to some degree, his fear was the most palpable and really brought home the ‘number’ that we do on ourselves. The mental warfare. (Granted he was the least experienced singer AND! on top of it chose a song he loved, but didn’t know well. Talk about challenging yourself!)

After we finished working and he sat down, he said, “This is better than therapy”. We all agreed.

In a culture where we are so separate from one another and isolated by our gadgets and gated communities there is something very powerful about coming together in a group to open up our throats and let out a song.  This used to be a basic human experience, singing with and in front of others. In fact, our brains are wired to feel good from singing. The endorphins and oxytocin released, the effect singing has on our heart and as a stress reliever is well-documented. And yet in our present age, the thought of saying words in a melodic fashion. . .i.e., ‘singing,’ can have a wild effect on our fight or flight response.

Another man in the group brought up the quote from Voltaire: Perfection is the enemy of good.  And we can all relate to that in some area of our lives. The notion that we have to be perfect at something in order start it, or that we have to be perfect to be likeable is such a cruel twist the mind plays.  Cruel to the point where it will stop us from doing something that is natural and ultimately joy-producing like singing!

Sometimes we have personal issues to work on that require us to go “within”. But there are instances whereby we need people, we require the presence of others to serve as our mirror.

Singing in front of a small group can offer the chance to see, for instance, how and where our inner critic has been taking up valuable real estate. Within the presence of a small group we have the chance to unlearn those tired mental loops that say we have to appear flawless in order to add value to the group.

In the end, you may find all of this is even, better than therapy!!

If you would like to join us, we are singing from 2-5pm in Carlsbad on Sundays.

Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without –Confucius

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Tips on How to Feel More Comfortable on Stage

In my last article on singing I raised the question of how a person can become less self-conscious, less nervous and more free when performing in front of others.

What every performance coach on the planet will tell you right off the bat is: Know your material.

Rehearse, rehearse, and then rehearse some more so that no matter how nervous you feel come show time, your muscle memory will kick into place. Having the sense that you are in control is vital. (*See article on Samurai Warriors.) If I am rehearsing alone, I often imagine the audience and the space where I’ll be performing.  While I’m committing my tunes to muscle memory I look around either my actual room or the imagined one in my head, and ‘practice’ looking into the eyes of people both up close and off in the distance.

When I auditioned for SNL, I had Lorne Michaels’ face on my desktop so I could see him and get used to looking at him so that when the time came, it would feel familiar.  And it truly worked. When I saw him behind the producer’s table, I thought…”Oh there’s my friend, Lorne,” and it was the most satisfying and fun audition I had ever given!

Before I appeared at The Kennedy Center (a room that seats over 2000) I researched the room online. I knew that I would not get more than a few minutes of rehearsal time on that awesome, and possibly, intimidating stage before I went on. So I watched videos of other performances and imagined the size of the room, the shape of the stage, how many steps people took to get across it. I had a concept, a felling, in my body and mind before I ever got there.  I had never been on a stage that big, but when the time came, it wasn’t daunting. It felt how I imagined it.

Use your imagination.

And use your imagination to tell yourself the kind of performance you are GOING to have. DETERMINE that you are going to be great, or at the least, determine that you are going to have nothing but fun! Set an intention. And then make the DECISION that you aren’t going to care what or how people see you. It’s none of your business. You don’t have control over them! You just have control over the amount of fun you get to put out into the world!

And never lose sight of the fact that everybody watching you WANTS you to do well. The audience is rooting for you! Everyone goes to a show to see ‘something’. . . or to be changed, uplifted, entertained. No one, save a sociopath, is sitting there hoping you are going to suck so they can feel really uncomfortable watching you sweat.

The audience WANTS you to take them out of their lives for five minutes or 60 minutes and show them a good time at best and at least, something different!  AND YOU, dear performer. . . have the privilege of being the person who gets to offer that to others.  It is an honor when viewed that way.  Make your performance about giving instead of receiving and you will have a whole new kind of freedom on stage.

Give from that soft place within your heart, or that fierce place, or that place where your sexual energy mingles with your creative fire.  Just know that what you are going to offer is nothing more and nothing less than YOUR take on how YOU experienced or experience a human emotion or scenario. What does it feel like for YOU to fall in love or be jilted or find a dream or lose a dream or be floating on air or waiting for the day to be over? What do you FEEL about those things that you are singing about. How does the music touch you? We, the audience don’t know yet. . .and are waiting excitedly to hear your spin.

Lastly, familiarize yourself with the vast wealth of information out there about how breathing slowly and rhythmically holds the magic key to calming your entire nervous system when you are stressed.  It’s NOT about taking deep breaths. ( There is a great video that I’ve spent the past 30 minutes trying to find! Once I do, I’ll post it here.)

Here is one of many articles that explains what to do. http://www.mybasis.com/blog/2013/10/the-science-of-stress-heart-rate-and-breathing/

I hope this helps!

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And if all else fails, just remember that nobody has ever died singing a song.

Extra Videos

Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are | Amy Cuddy | TED Talks  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ks-_Mh1QhMc

The surprising secret to speaking with confidence | Caroline Goyder | TEDxBrixton https://youtu.be/a2MR5XbJtXU

*The Samurai Secret to Always Being At Your Best
http://theweek.com/articles/450892/samurai-secret-always-being-best where can i buy research paper

Learning to Love and Accept Your Singing Voice

by Rosemary Watson

In my teens and 20s, I loved to sing by myself.  When I was left to my own devices in the living room and I let loose I didn’t think about my voice. I was too into the music to really care. And I was certain that if I were on a stage and singing the way that I did in my house without any fear or inhibition, I COULD move audiences.

When people walked into the room though, or I had to sing in front of others for whatever reason, all the good stuff drained away.  I would become self-conscious of my sound and embarrassed of any passion I felt over the words or music.  Maybe the tone really wasn’t that great? Maybe I sound terrible or even worse, just ordinary, I would think. And who wants to see how I really ‘feel’ about some love song!

Of course with nervousness and shallow breathing, one’s tone can change. But even on the off chance, that my voice didn’t shake or quiver and I could fool people into thinking I was in control, it didn’t matter because performing wasn’t fun, it was a chore, something to get through.

With time and effort, though, I learned how to be ‘okay’ with my voice.  I learned how to embrace the sound that my instrument makes. I still freak out on occasion performing, don’t get me wrong,  J but it’s usually not because I am worried about my sound.

With that, take a look at these pots and pans. Now, see if you can pick one that you think is better than the others.

potspans

Of course, one isn’t ‘better’. If you wanted to boil a little bit of water, the smallest pot would be excellent while the deep skillet would not serve you. Making soup for 10? The large, hefty pot is what you need.  Have 4 eggs to fry? The 14” sauté pan would be your choice.

Likewise, you were born with a voice formed in a particular body made up of DNA that has been evolving over millions of years. Your vocal cords, your mouth, nasal cavity, chest, all of the things required to make up your instrument are wonderfully unique to you.  Assuming you are not tone deaf, your voice,  be it tiny or booming, thin or deep, raspy or clear is really, just fine how it is right now. There is so much more to singing.

Obviously, training is important and certain songs and genres will lend themselves better to your instrument.  Just like no one wants to cook a burger in a pot, nobody wants to hear an opera singer singing rock-n-roll.  Wrong tool for the job. What I hope you will start to embrace today as you think about singing is that your uniqueness is the gift you have been given. It’s what can possibly make your singing spectacular.

Why possibly? There is something else and it’s key.  What is critical to singing well is opening your heart. A song sung without any passion, without any of the ‘person’ you are, is useless. The best voice in the world, won’t make you care if the artist is not willing to share some of his or her own authentic emotion. Where does it come from? The energy that animates YOUR instrument, the life experiences YOU have lived, the joy and sadness  YOU have felt and endured, the love, the fear YOU have walked through, all of this energy intermixed with your breath is what gives meaning and beauty to your voice. This is where the art of singing truly lives.  So my first bit of tough love is to say, get over the idea that your voice needs to ‘sound’ a certain way. There are countless examples of people with ‘less than beautiful’ voices who moved generations of people!

So start with the premise that YOUR voice CAN serve you, because it’s yours and finish with the notion that your experiences and energy will add color to the song that no one else alive can bring in just the way that you can. And that is good enough.

In the next installment, I will talk about the HOW. If, you are like me and you feel like a generally shy or reserved-type of person, HOW do you open up on stage? How do share your deeper feelings about love and life with a room full of strangers and not die of embarrassment.  Stay tuned. . .

Have a question about the BE IN THE BAND workshop, email RM@rosemarywatson.com

Want to audit? Space is available. Sign up before Oct. 19th!

 

BeInTheBand

Things I’m Learning Along the Way With Carol Burnett: Part 2

MAGIC

When I was a very young child I knew about magic.  I don’t mean the Doug Henning kind, although, his TV specials were, in all seriousness, very special back in the day. No, I mean that things would quite often show up the way I thought they would. And when I thought they would! Like a lot of children, (most children?) I was very intuitive. My thoughts felt powerful and Creative with a capital ‘C’. I believed in my thoughts220px-Doug_Henning_1976

When I watched Carol Burnett from my red-carpeted den in Highland Indiana, I always felt like I knew her; that I would know her or at the very least that I SHOULD know her. And I was certain that I would grow up to be just like her.  I sang, I acted, I danced, I wore my own version of Bob Mackie.

But as I grew up, “stuff happened” and like most people, I lost what came so naturally as a little human animal.  All of that intuitive power and magnetic ability started to disappear and I no longer believed that I was creating anything in my life.  Life was simply happening to me.

By the time I was 30 I was so “far” from who I was born to be that the most important people in my life didn’t know that I sang or did voices. People that I lived with, my best friends, people I was in love with, didn’t have a clue. And they didn’t have a clue, because I didn’t even remember!

The list of odd jobs and career paths I was on to distract or ‘find myself’ (I’m not sure which) was staggering. Retail, restaurants, massage, admin help, design, psychology, production work, social work. You name it, I’ve done it.  Once I worked for two days building a concrete wall.

At the age of 32, things turned around and I started singing professionally. The moment I woke up from my ten year slumber and went back to music was the moment, and it was “a moment”, when I realized that no one in my family and none of my friends would love me any less if I never sang a note again. The only person whom it would be unbearable for was me. I then understand that living ‘that’ life was just not going to be an option. So I found my nerve again.

At 41, I started doing voiceovers professionally. Since I was very young, I ‘heard’ characters and practiced accents all the time. But I never ventured down that career path because, well, that was for ‘those other’ people who clearly had or knew something about voices that I didn’t. No, I couldn’t possibly have a career doing something that came so easily to me. That would be crazy!  But now at 41 I was getting a divorce. I had a nine-month old to support and had no family around to help with my son so I needed to figure out what I could do from home and I needed to figure it out fast! Voiceover work was the answer.

Even though I was only married for about 20 minutes, my divorce took about 20 years and it was one of the worst things I have ever gone through. But, and it’s a big one, if I was still married I would not have been forced to find that part of myself again. And I would have never ventured to put videos up on YouTube.

And . . . I would have never met Carol Burnett.

The other day my friend Harry saw this picture of me with Carol, Julie Andrews, Tony Bennett and all these wonderful entertainers from
The Mark Twain Prize, and wrote to me,  “there is magic in this world”.  My friend knows where I have been in my life and sees how wonderfully things have unfolded. The one thing that I can say I changed was that I started to believe in magic again, just like I did as a child in that red-carpeted den. I changed my adult mind about what I imagined was possible. And I let those new dreams I was picturing be as real in my thoughts as if they had already happened.

A month ago I held Carol Burnett’s hand right before she walked out onto the Kennedy Center Stage to receive an award for her contribution to American Humor. In that moment, time stood still and my dream was a reality and my reality was better than I had dreamed.  There is magic here. And I know that it is here for everyone!

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Things I’m Learning Along the Way With Carol Burnett: Part 1

Carol Burnett with Family

 

On October 20, 2013, I had the chance to stand on stage at The Kennedy Center in Washington DC in front of about 2400 people and look up to the first tier of boxes to my left and see Carol Burnett looking back at me.

Sometimes when I replay the whole thing in my mind I put her in a sort of hovering position with gossamer wings in a mist of gold.  I’m only partially kidding, for she does feel like an angel to me, and the magic she has spread over my life feels ‘not of this world’.

My heart is so full of gratitude for the opportunities she has given me but equally so for the lessons I’m learning. The first is about

GRACE

I don’t think I have ever seen or met anyone exhibit more grace than Carol. And I have been around many, many graceful ballerinas, as well as royalty from the Netherlands.  But there was one moment, when I got nervous.

On Sunday the 20th, I was sitting in the green room with just one or two people watching Carol rehearse on a monitor. The audio wasn’t great but it was fun and surreal to be seeing her practice her speech in her rehearsal duds. And then something happened. There were many people on stage with her. A youngish woman, an assistant director maybe was trying to give “Ms. Burnett” some information about her cue. (I should point out that I had never seen or met Carol physically until that weekend!) I couldn’t hear the woman on the TV at all but I heard Carol.  She touched the woman’s forearms and began in a somewhat direct tone, “Dear, if we are going to continue you must…( and I braced myself thinking, oh please don’t be a behind-the-scenes-jerk!) call me ‘Carol’. Or you can call me Miss Jolie, Angelinnnnna Jolie” she joked with an accent.

Rosemary

And it is this down-to-earth friendliness and humility that comes so effortlessly to this legend putting everyone around her at ease. Not only did I hear her ask to be called by her first name but she is a master at remembering and calling other people by their first names. People she’ll never see again.  I overheard so many stars and ‘civilians’ at the Mark Twain show talk about Carol with such awe. One fellow said that before she gets to a set she knows everyone’s name. (In fact, she takes it all so seriously I actually saw her hail a taxi outside our hotel in Georgetown just so she could find out the cab driver’s name. “Goodbye Jamal” she yelled as he sped off confused.)

The same goes for her thoughtfulness about writing ‘thank you’ notes. I have sent her a few things over these past months and her response rate borders on freaky. You’re at the post office putting a stamp on the thing to go out and then turn around to get mail from your PO Box and there’s a return letter!

As I was writing this, in fact, a package had arrived outside my door. It was from Angelina Jolie, aka Carol. It was a beautiful gift and another beautifully handwritten note. (Her penmanship is incredible!) This one was complimenting me on my performance. Carol was thanking me for going to DC!  I mean, who does this? The woman just handed me the dream of a lifetime and she sends me a gift? Huh??

“Are you trying to kill me with kindness?” is my only question I would put to her.

But beyond all of this, what I really find myself wanting to emulate is the grace she shows by what she doesn’t say. Over the past few months there have been situations that have arisen in my life where I was challenged by a difficult person or sticky circumstance (and once even threatened by a wild boar on Catalina but I’ll leave that for the next blog).

In those tough moments I found myself asking, “What would Carol do?” particularly in business . . . and it wouldn’t take long before the answer was there.  Carol would keep her cool and she’d probably say very little and stay focused on something positive. Like her comedy, she doesn’t seem to join the fray. I never liked the word ‘classy’, kind of like how I hate the word baby-bump. I just don’t say it. But that’s the word for her. (Classy, not baby-bump.) Carol, the true star, stays above it all, just like how I remember it at The Kennedy Center. But don’t worry; you can save your requirements and have to get assistance of competition with paper. They search for the race of writing styles. They depend upon the beneficial options for students. They depend upon the race of writing service. After getting the admission essays. . buy custom college papers Every student required joining the with paper. They depend upon the students get the students in your requirements and in top MBA universities. Everyone can save your inbox. You simply need to get all kinds of competition and reliable option for the perfect quality academic writing .

Carol Burnett Called My Cell Phone and Then I Was Auditioning for SNL. No Really.

On Saturday June 2, 2012 at 3:44pm Carol Burnett called me. Let me rephrase that.

Thee C-A-R-O-L   B-U-R-N-E-T-T  called me, on the telephone.

I was driving along, five-year old in tow, and my cell phone rang. The number said, ‘BLOCKED’. I picked it up (admittedly without a headset on) thinking it was my son’s father and I’d quickly hand the phone to my boy in the back seat. It was not his dad. I put the phone on speaker and the familiar voice said, “Hello Rosemary? This is Carol Burnett.”

The world went into slow motion. (And this, children, is why you should never talk on your cell phone and drive!! Your idol might call you and you could freak out.)

But the weird part is, I knew why she was calling and, I was expecting it even though I was unprepared. A week or so earlier I had written a letter to Ms. Burnett at 2 am. I was unable to sleep that night and I started thinking about my life and how I had come to be doing mostly voiceovers for a living (albeit a rocky one).  I thought about my childhood and the years I spent mimicking Carol Burnett and her vast characters. By 4:00 in the morning my letter to the legendary comedienne was complete. Writing it felt so satisfying and moved me to tears often as I got to revisit the closeness and heart-aching sensation I felt towards her as a little girl. I was certain back then that we knew each other from some other time on some other plane, but somehow she just didn’t know it yet!

I asked her in the letter if she would be interested in producing a variety-type show with me, and/or if she would mentor me.  I told her about my website, and how profoundly grateful I was for the light that she gave the world and to me specifically. She changed my life in ways that she had no way of knowing and I wanted to tell her! Little did I know she was about to change my life again in ways I couldn’t have dreamed of.

The conversation went well. She spoke in English and I challenged her with my native gibberish sprinkled with muffled sobs, squeals and laughter.

 

She graciously pretended that I wasn’t acting like a moron and said, “I got your letter, and I just went to your website.”  I began trying to suck air from the atmosphere.  I told her I needed to pull-over. She felt badly….”Oh, you’re driving”. “No it’s okay.” I pulled into the strip mall. She continued to talk about my videos and singing and I think she said the words “you’re” and “amazing” or “terrific” together? I don’t quite remember but let’s just say adjectives were used and they sounded pretty good.

I choked out some words about my son being in the back seat and she immediately and tenderly asked me how old he was. I said five and a half. She said it was a great age and that she had a grandchild that age.  Was Carol Burnett trying to have a conversation with me on the phone? What planet did I just land on? Should I ask her about her family? I didn’t know!

She asked me if I had an agent. “No”. Well, why didn’t I? she wondered aloud. Part of me was dying to say, ‘Because my life has been waiting for this moment, right now, with you”. Part of me wanted to pitifully wax on about ‘the business’ and how ridiculously hard it is to get people to look at your work, including family and friends with good connections! Part of me wanted to tell her about the bad career choices that I was responsible for. But all I kept thinking was that I didn’t want to take up her time!

I mumbled out a story quickly about a very recent rejection I had gotten from the owner of one of the top VO agencies in Hollywood. My friend Al said I could use his name as a reference. It didn’t matter. The owner clearly didn’t even bother with my stuff and even if I am wrong, his response was that he had enough voiceover actresses like me. (Specifically he wrote: there really isn’t any room to expand right now given your abilities and POV. Never did quite understand what he meant by my point of view? Was this a political statement?)  Anyway, upon hearing this, Ms. Burnett said…“But you’re not just a voiceover artist. You just need to be in-front of the camera”. She then went on to say that she didn’t know Lorne Michaels personally but that she would contact him on my behalf.

Ok, I think with that statement my body was now hovering somewhere about 200 feet above the Jimbo’s market? I can’t be sure. All I know is that I was living the moment I had been visualizing without ceasing for months. (I was also hyper aware that my hungry child in the back had NEVER been so quiet or still as he was during that phone call. And I would give anything now to have a video of him watching me react so oddly to the nice sounding woman on the phone.) Ms. Burnett said more words in English while I switched to Pig Latin.  She then ended our conversation with an incredibly sweet goodbye.  The call lasted 5 minutes and 11 seconds.

As time passed that day, my elation turned into self-loathing. I was certain she understood that the REASON I didn’t have an agent was because I was a complete nut job who couldn’t communicate in full sentences.

Later that night, as I got into bed I bought her memoir on my Kindle. I only had enough energy to read one chapter. It was the only one I needed to read and the one I was meant to read.  In it she told about the spiritual-like connection she felt as a child with her idol Jimmy Stewart. Later when she met him for the first time on a set, she made, what she thought, was a total fool of herself. Years later the two would become good friends which was all she needed to conclude the chapter with the words ‘dreams can come true’.

As  fate would have it, Ms. Burnett did contact Lorne Michaels and it “just happened to be” right at the time when they were auditioning people for the new Saturday Night Live season starting tomorrow night. I was flown to NYC in July and did the standard SNL five-minute audition in front of LM and the other producers and writers. (If you’re wondering, you go on the stage, perform and get off. No chit chat. No introductions, no hellos.) For the first time in my life, I actually enjoyed doing an audition. I am a terrible auditioner, which is why I love voiceovers. But there’s something about having someone like Carol Burnett tell you you’re ‘okay’ that boosts a fella’s confidence.   And I must have done okay because a few weeks later I got an email asking me to come out, not to perform, but just get to know some of the producers better.  I did, and we had some wonderful meetings. The ‘vibe’ of the people on that show is truly something amazing. There is a very genuine air about the place and I know that comes from Lorne Michaels even though I haven’t spoken to him personally. I came back to California and felt pretty good about things until one night I woke up thinking, ‘I’m gonna have to go audition again.’ I checked my phone and there was a text asking me to come back in five days with some more “Hillary” as well as other new stuff. I was a bit surprised and feeling less confident now, but they assured me it was ‘normal’.  And at every step on this journey I would email Ms. Burnett and her sweet assistant to tell them the latest development. They were both so encouraging.  It would be my fourth trip actually back to the East Coast in 45 days.

I came up with completely new, untested characters for the second audition and was working on them up to the last minute. It was gutsy but I felt like I would do okay taking those risks. Physically, however, I was at the point of exhaustion on the day of the audition. Not because of the creative process but because of the travelling, the time changes, the stress and chronic bouts of insomnia that have hovered around me for eleven years.

I was near throwing up because of the fatigue. All I could think of the entire day, was not about the fun of getting a second chance to perform on the SNL stage!! but the relief I would get by going  to bed immediately after the audition. I left NY the next day not quite in the happy place I had been in.   As the season start date neared I would check ‘SNL news’ on the internet until one day this week I read about the young people they had hired from Chicago. I passed the info on to the Burnett camp just in case they didn’t know.  And in truly awe-inspiring fashion, Carol Burnett called me again on my cell phone yesterday. This time when the word BLOCKED came up I knew it was her. She told me how sorry she was that I wasn’t selected. We continued to chat. And this time I spoke English.  She told me about her upcoming trip to New York to do some TV appearances as her beloved variety show is coming out in a newly packaged DVD via Time-Life. She wished my son well and sent her love.

While getting a life-changing job like SNL would have been great for my bank account, I’m lucky enough to have a child to keep me grounded in the certainty that life is about love. The love I felt from my girlfriends who helped me with the logistics of having a small child and flying across the country on a moment’s notice is beyond words. The love I have felt from friends and family so hoping for my good fortune has been priceless and the love I have felt from THEE! Carol Burnett is truly a perfect way to end this chapter. Nothing bittersweet about it. Dreams do come true.

SNL Dressing RoomSNL Hallway bag of wigs
30Rock

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Cocktail Server Uses Facebook to Save A** and Face

April 29, 2013
Ass. Press –
An area cocktail server admitted Friday she’s been posting more pictures than usual of her boyfriend on Facebook just to “make sure a certain someone knows I’m not available”. Stonebridge’s own Taylor Lansing, 23, has been serving up Jack and Coke’s at Ignition Bar and Grill for over a year now and says that while the job is working out with her class schedule, she’s tired of some of the attention local clients have been giving her. For the somewhat attractive server, Facebook has been her salvation.

“I mean without it, I dunno what I’d do. It’s not like I’m gonna be honest and tell people I’m with someone, ya know? For a server that’s death. But this way people can take a hint without losing face.” When asked to name names Lansing remained mum, mumbling, “mo mook ah my macemoo mage.” A cursory look at her Facebook page revealed Chaz E. Martinez as the probable source of Lansing’s photo pasting frenzy. Martinez, an employee at Michael’s and “interested in women”, liked and/or commented on nearly everything Lansing posted over the past two months.

For Lansing, it’s been rather annoying. “Look, I can’t afford to lose tips and I don’t want to unfriend people just because they have some weirdo obsession with me or whatever. But I also don’t want to have to customize another friend list. Who has the time for that bull$_!#, ya know?”

Martinez was online and did accept our Friend Request, however,  he would not reply to our Instant Message for comment.

Meanwhile, Lansing is hopeful that her latest Facebook cover photo will send a strong but friendly message to her 945 friends.  At the time of this posting, 25 had given a thumbs up to the photo. Martinez was not one of them.

Taylor Lansing and her boyfriend in Cabo 2013

Taylor Lansing and her boyfriend in Cabo 2013

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Horse Meat & Bed Sheets…A Singer Sits In

Tonight I’m sitting in at a local restaurant…well, local if you live in La Jolla…and ‘sitting-in’ in the musical sense, not the political sense. If you aren’t sure what I mean, to ‘sit-in’ with a band means you are performing with a group you haven’t necessarily rehearsed with and for which you probably aren’t getting paid.  Inherent in the meaning is also the idea no one can complain about your performance because, “hey…I’m just sitting-in!” So in that sense, the “sit-in” does allow the performer a certain freedom.

To “sit-in” in the other sense of the word means “a form of direct action that involves one or more people nonviolently occupying an area for a protest, often to promote political, social, or economic change.” (from Wikipedia)

I suppose in a perfect world I could sit-in AND sit-in. That would be something special and a more effective use of my time, no-doubt. But for tonight I can’t really think of a good political reason to sit-in at Eddie V’s. Oh sure this whole IKEA horse-meat food mislabeling thing has me miffed…but then again, the whole dead cow/dead pig thing doesn’t really float my boat either and I don’t know why everyone this side of France gets up on their high-horse over horse meat?

Frankly, I think if I was gonna do a sit-in regarding the products at IKEA it would be about the sheets that I just bought.  Although it’s not necessarily their fault that I’m a sucker. I don’t know what I was thinking buying a 300- thread count…but the color absolutely lured me in.  Just like a Hoover vacuum had hold of my neck, I couldn’t resist. They had a sheen about them and so I thought maybe it had some of that magic micro fabric mixed in.

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Well, they don’t. They’re just as you would expect a 300-thread count to feel. Terrible. And I know because I’ve slept on them and I can’t take them back.But the color is gorgeous isn’t it? Not some mealy baby blue, not hospital green…but a perfect happy shade of turquoise. To be honest, when I buy sheets I think it’s important that they not only look good on the bed but also provide a good backdrop for my skin tone if say, just say, someday there was an on-looker. Which there isn’t. But I’m prepared.

Sadly, my last boyfriend was killed at a sit-in.  He was seated when he should have been standing and was trampled.

I think tonight, I’ll probably stand and sing, in protest of the sit-in. I bought a new pair of shoes the other day  at DSW, which was next door to the IKEA.  They are incredibly high making them the ideal shoe to get on a horse with. To be honest I bought two pairs and one doesn’t fit as I thought it would once my feet de-swelled from walking around IKEA. I don’t know what I was thinking buying an enclosed size 7!  In a stroke of sheer luck, however, there’s a DSW on the way to my gig tonight and you can bet your Swede ass that I’m taking them back! See you there. I start at 7pm.

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