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Tuesday, December 30, 2003


"Recap: Christmas 2003"


Well, for me this Christmas was a joyous one. My sister and I made the 300 mile drive across the state of Wisconsin -- exactly one week ago -- in favorable weather conditions. Ironically, when we left Milwaukee on the 23rd of December, there was no snow. We saw very little throughout the drive, and arrived in Minneapolis to see everything covered in white. They've had snow this winter; Milwaukee has had hardly two inches. When we returned late last night to Milwaukee, we found that it hadn't snowed at all while we were gone. Go figure. I'm begining to think this will be yet another unusual winter around here. We'll have to see I guess.

My visit with family in Minneapolis was enjoyable. My sister, Becca, currently attending VMI (Virginia Militiary Institute) out on the east coast, was in town, as was my younger college brother Ben -- home from Buena Visita University in Iowa. Then, with Rachel and I up from Wisconsin, and those still living at home, the Holiday made for a full house again -- just like old days when we were all still young.

I think my parents really appreciated these opportunities too. As us six kids all grow up and move away, the house becomes quieter. They really seem to enjoy having us all around -- most of the time anyway. Christmas tends to be the best opportunity for that. Other times of the year, there's no guarrantee we'll all be home as we all have lives elsewhere about the country.

While I was home relaxing, I enjoyed getting in on a few board games, talked with my parents, enjoyed my mom's home cooking (which I really do miss the rest of the year), went to see The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (a purely breathtaking movie that had better win something at the Oscars!), hung out with my two younger brothers, and just enjoyed being in Minneapolis for a few days. I also ended up finding a few more paying art projects to work on, and was presented with some other ideas for future projects. So, all-in-all, it was a wonderful six day visit.

Now, though, I'm back in Milwaukee, and it's business as usual again. I've got more creative projects to work on, the ever-annoying search for a suitable secondary job, and the much appreciated simple life I've been living lately. Couple that with an upcoming stage acting gig, and some new resolutions to keep me busy this coming year, and I really can't complain. Life has been good to me. It may be challenging at times, but the truth is, I am richly blessed by my Heavenly Father. And, for that, I am eternally thankful.

So, the year 2003 now draws to a close and I look towards a new year -- A new year of goals, and a continued journey towards those passions that drive me closer to success. I think it'll be a fun 2004. And hey, feel free to join me right here as it happens! It should prove to be an exciting journey!

God Bless you and yours this New Years, and drive safely. I'll catch you again sometime Wednesday.

Your thankfully blogging friend,
-Jon

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"Back In The Land Of Wisconsin"


Well, I've returned from Minnesota and visiting family for Christmas. Alas, however, it is almost 1am on Tuesday, and driving can be tiring -- especially at night. So, without further adeu, I think I'm going to head off to bed.... But, I'll catch you all later Tuesday with a bit of a recap of my own Christmas joy. Until then, God bless.

-Jon

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Tuesday, December 23, 2003


"Merry Christmas!"


Well, I'm off traveling, and visiting family. Have a blessed Christmas all, and if I don't write while I'm away, I'll see you when I return early next week. God bless!

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Sunday, December 21, 2003


"Zane Williams on Nashville Star II?"


Those of you who attended Wisconsin Lutheran College a few years back, might remember a talented country singer named Zane Williams who came and performed in the Campus Center. At the time he was one of the most popular music artists touring college campuses. Since then he has been voted 2003's Best Male Artist on CampusAwards.com and finalist for the 3rd Annual GRAMMY (National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences) Unsigned Artists Showcase.

Well, today I recieved his most recent emailed newsletter, and it contained some particularly exciting news. He has been selected to compete in the regional country music competition for Nashville Star II on the USA network!

For those of you unfamilar, Nashville Star is the country music version of the hugely popular American Idol on Fox. This will be the second successful season of Nashville Star.... The first season launched the professional music career of the talented Buddy Jewell.

This season (as with the last), local auditions were sponsored by various radio stations and held all across the country. From these auditions, two contestants have been selected from each city to move on to the regionals. A select few contestants were also selected via video-taped auditions. (Zane was one of these few winners based on the video tape he sent in).

So, these local winners now compete in the regional competitions in January, and a total of 20 semi-finalists will be chosen from these regional competitions to move on and perform in front of a national audience on this season's premiere episode. At the end of the first show, a panel of judges will select 10 finalists, and then, the television viewing audience will be asked to vote to add an 11th! In the end, one talented winner will emerge as the newest "Nashville Star" and land a coveted recording contract with Sony Music Nashville.

Naturally, as a long-time fan of Zane Williams I've been intruiged to follow his goal of being a Christian artist in the Country Music Industry. He is attempting to do the same thing in country music as I am hoping to do in Hollywood -- be a Christian artist in a national artistic industry. Now that he has earned a competetive spot on Nashville Star II, I guess I have even more incentive to watch this second season!

If you're interested in learning a little more about Zane, feel free to visit his website. You'll even be able to sample some of his original music! So, enjoy, and hey, keep an eye open for him on Nashville Star II!

Your happily blogging country music fan friend,
-Jon

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Saturday, December 20, 2003


"The Nutcracker"


Hmm. Can you think of a more traditional Christmas movie than "The Nutcracker"?....

This evening, I sat down and decided to watch "Nutcracker: The Motion Picture". You know, the 1986 made-for-film ballet version, by the Pacific Northwest Ballet and directed by Carroll Ballard....

Yep, it was on television (as it is every Christmas since 1986), and I'll be honest, each Christmas (when I can) I enjoy watching it. Not many guys my age tend to enjoy ballet, but this one I do. And besides, how can you not appreciate the orchestral score by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky? It's a classic! .... And the magnificent sets! And the costumes!....

Yep, I do love a classic! .... [grin].

Have a blessed Sunday all, and a safe and merry Christmas.

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Friday, December 19, 2003


"Friday: A Little Christmas Shopping"


Today, Rachel (sister) and I went and did a little Christmas shopping. Our destination of choice? -- The premier mall in the Milwaukee area, Mayfair Mall. She had a few things she wanted to look for, and she invited me along.

Now, there's one thing I am grateful for about that mall, especially during the Christmas shopping season, and that is that I don't work there anymore. See, that's the mall where the Barnes and Noble I used to work at is located. My employment there last Christmas taught me one very important lesson -- Don't work at a mall during Christmas!

Mayfair mall was crowded -- very crowded. The parking lots were jammed full of cars, and even parking lots normally vacant were teeming with cars and people. Inside, the mall concourses were full of people of all shapes and sizes going from store to store racking up store profits. And I'll be honest, stores like the profits. No, wait, they REALLY like the Christmas profits. It disgusts me somewhat.

I won't argue, I have been known to frequent stores come Christmas as I look for a gift or two as well, but when everyone does the same thing, it's not as enjoyable. Big shopping bags with store logos emblazened boldly across them advertising that particular store;.... signs out in mall walkways enticing people to stop in THAT store and not others;.... pretty decorations and lights;..... people yammering about the deals they found (which, if they really think about it aren't really deals, just clever marketing promotions);.... and, intoxicating perfume aromas wafting out of the many bath, body, purfume, and intimate apparel stores.

Yeah, shopping in malls during Christmas is sometimes an annoying experience. Working in one is even more annoying. Perhaps even harrowing.

When I worked in Barnes and Noble, shoppers seem to enjoy showing sales people how annoying they can be, how impatient they are, and often, how irate they can get over the smallest of things. No, I'm very glad not to be spending my waking hours working in a mall over Christmas. Not my cup of tea. Trust me. I learned the hard way -- last Christmas.

But, all ranting side, today was a nice to spend with my sister. She didn't buy much, but we looked around the various mall stores, stopped in the food court for lunch, and talked. Thankfully, having her as company made the hassle of Christmas mall shopping not as trying on my patience.... and that I appreciated!

So, there are now only six more days until Christmas. Some people count down the days. Me, not so much. Maybe what I'll be counting down will be the days until I decide to return to a much less populated Mayfair Mall! .... [chuckle].

Have a good weekend all, and try not to forget that shopping is not what Christmas is about.... the celebration of the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ is! Don't forget that. .... and please, please, please be nice to mall employees!

Have a good one, and, until later,

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Wednesday, December 17, 2003


"I, Borg"


Man, I wish I had access to get to Las Vegas to apply for this job! I could easily perform as a Starfleet Officer, or heck, even a Borgified Starfleet Officer! That's right up my alley! But... [sniff] .... the job and auditions are in Las Vegas, and I live in Milwaukee. Bummer.

Actor/ Performer -- Star Trek: The Experience at the Las Vegas Hilton.

(Thanks to Dave for forwarding this job listing to me.)

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Tuesday, December 16, 2003


"Your a Mean One, Mister Grinch"


How's this for holiday cheer? ....Man, I love this song! Makes me chuckle every time! :)

*****

You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch
(How the Grinch Stole Christmas - 1966 TV Film)
- sung by Boris Karloff


You're a mean one, Mister Grinch
You really are a heel,
You're as cuddly as a cactus, you're as charming as an eel, Mister Grinch,

You're a bad banana with a greasy black peel!

You're a monster, Mister Grinch,
Your heart's an empty hole,
Your brain is full of spiders, you've got garlic in your soul, Mister Grinch,

I wouldn't touch you with a thirty-nine-and-a-half foot pole!

You're a vile one, Mister Grinch,
You have termites in your smile,
You have all the tender sweetness of a seasick crocodile, Mister Grinch,

Given a choice between the two of you I'd take the ... seasick crocodile!

You're a foul one, Mister Grinch,
You're a nasty wasty skunk,
Your heart is full of unwashed socks, your soul is full of gunk, Mister Grinch,

The three words that best describe you are as follows, and I quote, "’Stink’, ‘Stank’, ‘Stunk!’"

You're a rotter, Mister Grinch,
You're the king of sinful sots,
Your heart's a dead tomato splotched with moldy purple spots, Mister Grinch,

Your soul is an appalling dump heap overflowing with the most disgraceful
assortment of deplorable rubbish imaginable, mangled up in tangled up knots!

You nauseate me, Mister Grinch,
With a nauseous super "naus",
You're a crooked jerky jockey and you drive a crooked hoss, Mister Grinch,

You're a three decker sauerkraut and toadstool sandwich, with arsenic sauce!

*****

You can hear a short sample of this recording here on Amazon.com.

Enjoy sharing the 'cheer'! .... I know I am. .... [grin].

-Jon

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"Day Two of a Brighter Week"


Well, it's a little past 6pm now on Tuesday. It hasn't been as stessful a day as it could have been today. I haven't gotten as much done as I'd wanted, but the day is still young. I have a good number of hours yet. We'll see what I can make of them.

Incidently, I never got to that computer game yesterday. I was distracted by something else that needed to get done, and then boom.... the hours had flown by and I never had the time to enjoy that relaxing game. Maybe I'll try again tonight. I think this evening might prove to be relaxing, though, whatever I choose to undertake. I'm looking forward to that. ....Putting off my concerns for a few hours. Can't beat that!

Oh, and thankfully, I did get paid today (some of what I've been waiting for anyway), so this artist now has some good food in his refrigerator. Yay food!

And lastly, I'm sitting here typing this and listening to the Transiberian Orchestra's rendition of the "Carol of the Bells." A classic Christmas song performed with base guitars, drums, and other such rock instraments. Great song. Strangely, every Christmas, it's one of my favorite Holiday songs. Go figure. .... [chuckle].

Well, have a blessed evening, and I may muse some more yet before the day is through. Take care, and stay warm! .... It's cold outside (at least here in the Cheese State). Keep those mittens handy. :)

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Monday, December 15, 2003


"Monday Mid-day Update."


Well, it's 2pm Monday afternoon here in Milwaukee, and maybe -- just maybe -- this is turning out to be a better day than I had originally expected....

Unfortunately, I still haven't gotten paid for those projects/ebay sales I made recently, but, maybe I'm being a little too hopeful too early. I hope they come tomarrow. I really do.

On the upside of things though, I broke down and decided to give unemployment a call this afternoon. That seems to have produced some positive news for the time being. So, naturally, the dire concern for today isn't as dire as it could be. We'll see what the next few days bring as I continue to job-search.

And, finally, a bit of trivia I find peculiar in regards to my call to unemployment.... Did you know they require only at least two (2) resumes or job applications to be sent out each week?!! Man, I average 6-10 per day! I guess I don't feel so bad about my success rate anymore. .... [chuckle].

Well, I'm going to 'celebrate' a moderately fruitful day so far, and take an hour or two to relax and play a computer game before returning to the hunt. Take care all, and I'll probably catch you all again later this evening. Until then,

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Sunday, December 14, 2003


"Saddam Hussein Captured!"


Alright! I think this proves to be excellent news on the Iraq war front....

Saddam Hussein Captured Alive Near Tikrit.

Let's hope this leads to an ease in tensions over in Iraq, as well as a step toward better government. I know a lot of people will be breathing easier now -- especially those who had to live under his tyranny in Iraq. Nicely done!

-Jon

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Friday, December 12, 2003


"A Father's Sense of Humor and His Watchful Eye"


Ok, God certainly has a sense of humor. I state, here in my blog, not a day ago, that I was feeling a need for interaction and a longing for new friendships, and what does he do?.... He leads me to four new friends (online) -- and one of whom I have already met in person! And what's better yet, that friend whom I have met in person is just the kind of friend I was looking for!

It's funny, really. She found me. Out of the blue, earlier this week I recieved an email from Amy, saying hi, and that she'd love to chat sometime. Out of curiousity, I contacted her on instant message, and we've chatted a few times since, getting to know each other a bit. Of the four new friends she's the friend here in Milwaukee, and, as I am also in Milwaukee, she invited the opportunity for us to get together. I was hesitant at first (as I usually would be), but this evening she convinced me to take in dinner and a movie.... And I had a blast!

Dinner was at Panera Bread, which was an excellent choice (and incidently free for the both of us due to unexpected reasons.... How cool is that!). The conversation was very interesting (as always), the company very enjoyable, and the film -- "The Last Samuri" -- was a good one. In the end, it ended up being an all-around wonderful evening!

In short, though, I'm really liking Amy. And I'm thrilled to have met a new friend here in Milwaukee. Aside from Matt and Sara that live just a few blocks down, Jenn, and Jessica (Mr. 3000 extra) whom I sadly don't see very often, Amy has joined a very small category of friends that I know -- in person -- here in Milwaukee. I certainly hope we can build on that friendship. :)

Yeah, God has a sense of humor sometimes. But I'm glad he does, because it's that sense of humor, and His Unconditional Love that always reminds me in times like this, He's always watching out for me, and I have no reason to worry. If God is for me, who -- or what -- can be against me!

Have a blessed weekend all, and remember the little blessings in life. They're usually the ones that mean the most in the end. Sleep well. Until next time....

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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"Waiting For Payday."


Urgh! What can be more frustrating than waiting to get payed when your pocketbook is empty? I have a few paychecks supposedly on their way to me as I write -- mostly for smaller projects, ebay sales, and that sort of thing -- but they haven't arrived yet. .... And I'm really looking forward to when they do. They'll tide me over until a larger check or two can start to kick in (assuming I can secure that new job I'm seeking -- sooner than later I hope).

So, I guess the game must be a waiting game, and there's really nothing I can do about that. I suppose, though, this is where my skills for patience really kick in. External forces are probably at work, and when the pay comes... the pay comes. I just have to wait until it does. But, then again, such is life right, so what I am so worried about?... Heck, my Heavenly Father hasn't let me down yet in all my 23 years. So, I guess the odds in life are already on my side, right? ... [smile].

...Oh, well. Patience. Patience.

Have a blessed Friday and/or weekend. I'll catch you again shortly.

Your happily patient friend,
-Jon

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Thursday, December 11, 2003


"Single White Male Seeks New Friends"


Lately, I've been longing for the chance to meet some new friends. You don't really see a lot of people when your work is solitary and there is little reason to get out much. I'm not a bar or club-hopping person, so meeting people that way just isn't going to happen, and there just isn't really a whole lot of substance to my present social life. So, I usually have little motivation to get out much other than personal errands and such.

Oh, don't get me wrong, I do have friends, but the tough thing about being a college graduate after four years of constant interaction among people my own age, is that all those friends have moved elsewhere in the country, gotten married, or we've just lost touch with each other. Even my friend Scott -- probably my best friend actually -- lives an hour away, and visiting isn't always and option.... rare at best. My friend Matt does live nearby (a few blocks actually), but he's married, has one daughter, and another little one on the way. My friend Dave lives in Chicago which makes getting together a little challenging.... and Jessica (fellow Mr. 3000 extra), well, she's often busy. I'd dearly love to get the opportunity to spend more time getting to know her, but for now, perhaps that will have to wait some.

So, that leaves me looking to expand my base of friends.

But, thankfully, there is Someone looking out for me, and He let's the blessings enter my life -- little by little sometimes, but just anough that I am never too much in want. Enter four new friends, each that I have met through aqaintences online -- Aly, Kitty, Amy, and Ed.

Aly (short of Alejandra) is a med student studying in Texas who has a bright charm about her and is a wonderful conversationalist. Kitty, as her screen name may imply, loves cats.... a lot! She has an interest in religious discussions and has an amusing wit about her. Amy, is a local Milwaukeean who is also a great conversationalist, and seems to have a lot of similar interests as I. Chatting with her is never dull. Ed.... well, Ed is a recent new member to join my online Star Trek PBeM game, and, though studying medicine as well, he and I seem to have hit it off well. We have a lot of common interests.... many stemming from a love of pets and science fiction.

So, four new friends.... Each is unique in his or her own way, and, for me, each is someone I am very interested in getting to know -- mostly through coorespondence online, of course, given the distance. But, the truth is, there is never really a shortage of wonderful people out there. The key, I guess, is just being willing to find them. And, like the title of this post says, I'm always game for meeting new friends! We'll see where these lead. .... [smile].

Well, until next time, this is me signing off. Have a blessed Friday.

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Tuesday, December 09, 2003


"Rainy Tuesday"


It rained most of today. Yeah, rain! On December 9th? Hmm. .... You know, maybe we are in for another strange winter. Here's hoping it's at least not a frigid one. :)

-Jon

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Monday, December 08, 2003


"Elf & Clay Aiken"


Today Rachel had a day off from rehearsals and performances for Peter Pan, so she came down here to Milwaukee and invited me to see "Elf" (starring Will Ferrell) with her. If you haven't seen the film yet, go see it. It's hilarious, and Will Ferrell is great in the title role. If you have seen it, feel free to leave a comment below. I'd love to hear what you thought. :)

Second bit of news today. I noted a few days back a little about Clay Aiken, the runner-up in season two of American Idol on Fox.... Well, I missed the competition on television, but clips of his performance are available on ClaytonAiken.com. I spent a little time today -- after getting back from the movie -- going through them and catching up on what I missed. I could probably leave a very positive critique of Clay, however, I'll sum it up best in the words of one of the judges of the competition, "....I still can't figure out where that [great] voice is coming from! You don't look like a pop star, but you sure can sing like the best of them!"

...In short, this guy's got one heck of an awesome voice! And now that that voice has garnered him quite an audience, he's sticking to his guns and remaining himself -- quite humble too. If you haven't met Clay yet, feel free to watch some of the clips of his performances on American Idol II!

And, last bit of news... If you haven't done so already, feel free to read my review (below) of Peter Pan -- starring my sister. The show was ok; Her performance was surprising. Enjoy!

Until next time,

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Sunday, December 07, 2003


"Sunday: Checking in."


Well, my parents left for Minnesota again today. It was a joy having them visit. Ironically, though, I'll see them again in three weeks. Afterall, it is almost Christmas! .... Now, I just have to make sure I'm available for the full duration Rachel has planned to be up there. (She and I will be driving up to Minnesota the end of the month). Should be fun.

But, alas for now, I find myself still tired after an eventful weekend. Time to grab a few more hours of sleep. I'll catch you on the flipside. Take care and have a blessed Sunday.

-Jon

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Saturday, December 06, 2003


"Saturday Review of Peter Pan"


I spent the day today on the road and up around Sheboygan, Wisconsin. My sister Rachel (aka, Rachel Elizabeth) is starring as Peter Pan in the Sheboygan Community Theatre production by the same name.

Personally, though trying to remain unbiased, I think Rachel actually carried the show. .... From an acting standpoint, I don't think there was any doubt that she was perhaps one of the most talented (aka, skilled) theatrical players in the cast. She had the energy, seemed emmersed in role, and was having loads of fun. I was impressed too with her vocal abilities, sometimes even wondering where they came from. She told me afterwards that she had felt a bit off during this performance, but clearly, I think she was being a little hard on herself. She pulled off the role of Peter Pan magnificently.

What impressed me even more, was that the night before, she had reinjured her foot (an old injury) dancing about as Peter Pan onstage. As it turned out, this injury was actually a hairline stress fracture. Despite the pain however, she hid the injury so well during Saturday's performance, that I couldn't even tell her foot was wrapped. She definitely has a strong spirit and a determination that will take her far. If you get the chance, head up to Sheboygan and give her performance a watch! I guarrantee you won't regret it!

In review of the rest of the acting, though, there weren't too many other players that caught my eye. Although I appreciated the perspective of the actor playing Hook, his performance just didn't strike me as all that impressive. It was very so-so, I would say. And, to be honest, quite a bit contrived. But that's just my honest opinion. The character of Smee too struck me much the same way, though his performace came across quite a bit more flat than that of Hook. Maybe Saturday just wasn't their best performance.

If you do go up and see the show, though, keep an eye out for the crocodile. Though in full costume, it's played by a cute little 4-year-old girl, and she almost steals the scene! [sniff, sniff]. :)

In other review, the set was ok. For a community theatre production it wasn't bad, however, considering how well-off I hear the Sheboygan Theatre is (being quite renowned actually) I perhaps expected something a little more impressive. I think the painting caught my attention much more than the actual set peices though, as color was well-used. But the set peices themselves just seemed to come across as a little hastily constructed sometimes. Then again, however, I am used to seeing many many professional shows, and perhaps I was personally setting the bar a little high. But, I certainly won't complain too much. The Set Designer did did do a good job with what he had.

The lighting actually seemed to come off as rather sound in my opinion. Tinkerbell (a highly focused light beam) was convincing, and the stage lighting fit the given set. All-in-all there, nicely done.

I think what impressed me most -- other than Rachel's surprising performance -- was the theatre space. The Sheboygan Community Theatre has one heck of a wonderful theatre. Ironically, it's built as part of a local community school, although what the heck an ordinary elementary school is doing with a professional theatre space like that is way beyond me! I just wish my old college had had that space -- Now that would have been awesome!

Overall rating? Out of five stars I give the show itself three. But, that's not to say you might not enjoy certain elements more than I. This is just my honest opinion.

If you're interested in more information about the Sheboygan Community Theatre, or the show of Peter Pan, please feel free to take a look at the theatre's website.

If you go to see the show, feel free to leave your comments below!

Have a blessed day all.

Your happily blogging theatrically-minded friend,
-Jon

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Friday, December 05, 2003


"A Friday Visit!"


Today my parents arrived for their visit down here from Minnesota. I haven't seen them since spring when my sister Rachel graduated. They'll be spending the evening before heading up to Sheboygan to see her in Peter Pan.

This evening we got quite a bit of time to talk and catch up on the latest news. My mom also brought me some of her hand-dipped Victorian bon-bons (chocolates) for which she is growingly well known. I miss those, but then again, I do have a bit of a sweet tooth sometimes, especially when it comes to my mom's cooking. :)

They treated Rachel and I to dinner at the local Applebees, and after some more enjoyable chat time, turned in for the evening. I'll follow suit soon. Tomarrow should prove to be a long, but entertaining day.

I'll catch you tomarrow, hopefully with a review of Peter Pan. Take care all, and, until then,

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Thursday, December 04, 2003


"Visitors and Snow Shoveling"


Well, this weekend my parents are coming down to Milwaukee to visit, and, then heading up to Sheboygan to see my sister (Rachel) perform as Peter Pan -- in the stage musical Peter Pan -- at the Sheboygan Theatre Company. It should prove to be an interesting weekend. ....My parents visiting, and seeing my sister fly. Yep, two things that don't happen very often. So, needless-to-say, I really looking forward to the next few days! :)

In other news, I (and my roomate, Noah) have been contracted to remove the snow on the property of our apartment building(s). I haven't shoveled snow like this in probably five years. In college (my four years), maintenance took care of shoveling the walks. Last winter, in this apartment building, someone else did the shoveling. This year I get the honor. Ironically, I'm actually looking forward to the opportunity. (Although, who's to say I won't get tired of it sometime in late January!... lol...). I grew up showeling the snow every winter by hand. I can do this job!

Well, that's the skinny for tonight. Sleep calls, and I am actually rather tired. I'll catch you later this weekend and recap a little about Peter Pan and my visit from family.

Until then, however, take care, and have a blessed Friday.

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Wednesday, December 03, 2003


"Mr. 3000 Release Date"


Well, the news is now official, the Hollywood film, "Mr. 3000", starring Bernie Mac (and featuring your's truely), opens in wide release on May 14, 2004.

-Jon

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"Clay Aiken"


While I'm still a new fan to the music of Clay Aiken (runner-up in the recent second season of the television hit, American Idol), there's no denying that he's a very intruiging personality in the world of Hollywood. The fact that he's a down-to-earth church-going Baptist, lends itself even more to this fact (especially in my own mind!). Few in Hollywood these days seem to share his morals and integrity.

I actually happened upon a popular message board for his fans recently. If you're interested in reading up on some of the discussions Clay's personality and music has ganered, feel free to take a look sometime. And, by all means enjoy!

-Jon

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Tuesday, December 02, 2003


"Muesday: Another Day In The Life of An Artist."


(Yes, I know I spelled the title wrong. Just go with me here.) :)

Well, I'm back at it, pulling strange hours just becasue I can. It's almost Tuesday afternoon now, and I've been working through most of the night/morning. I like the morning. It's calm, peaceful -- a little cold these days with winter upon us -- but nonetheless a great time to work on things. It's solitary. I like that.

Anyway, my sister had another commercial audition today, and though she lives up in Sheboygan now, she is still able to commute down here and pursue her own acting career. So, as it turned out, she asked me (who presentely works at home) to drive her. I guess she had been told there would be an issue with parking. I was already a bit tired by 9am, but I agreed.

When we got there -- to the agency where her audition was -- the small parking lot was indeed parked full. So, with 20 minutes to kill as I waited for her audition to conclude, I dropped her off and went to the local Barnes and Noble (NOT the one I previously worked at) to browse.

When I returned to pick Rachel up (and after driving around a bit to kill time) she had been in there for almost an hour. (Acting. It can be a busy business!). But, after she vented a little of her own frustration, and talked of the interesting fellow actors she had met, we stopped at McDonald's for breakfast (thankfully her treat) and returned to my apartment. She dropped me off and had to return to Sheboygan to the north to work (Pizza Hut).

Now, though, when I sit and take a moment to reflect on the events of the end of my 'day', maybe I should take more of a look at how my sister is living the artist life....

She, like myself, has her own struggles at the moment. But yet, despite working at a place that isn't exactly respecting her as much as they could, she's making a meager paycheck and just barely getting by, starring as Peter Pan in one of the better renowned Community Theatres in the country, and still able to make it down to Milwaukee to audition for commercial jobs! I look at her determination, and come to one conclusion -- I gotta buckle down even more in my own artist life! My own younger sister is taking on more than I am, and still finding success!

But the truth is, maybe I should use my sister as an example of the determination I need to work even more towards. If she and I can each just barely get by in our own unique lives, and yet she is living proof that unyielding hard work and determination eventually pay off, than by George there's always room for improvement in my own efforts, right?

Life is interesting. If you look only at the negatives, you see a negative future. But if you cloud the negatives and look straight at only the positives -- even if there are hills in the way -- there's no end to the possibilities! If Rachel can be living proof of that fact, than so can I.

Man, but I do love being a Baas though! We seem to have thick blood, and strong consititutions for overcoming obstacles in life. Rachel proves that equation can equal success. Now it's my turn. [grin].

For now though, time for bed. I'll catch you all sometime Wednesday. :)

Your happily blogging artistic friend,
-Jon

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Monday, December 01, 2003


"Job Hunt: Was That Strike Two?"


Well, today's news seems a little depressing. My second interview seems like it might not work out either. It's preferred that I have a car -- which I don't, and, the location of the company is not accessable by public transportation.

I called earlier today and had to cancel the interview. Tentatively, they were kind enough to offer to reschedule, but I really don't know yet how feasable this position is going to be for me. It is a marketing job -- not quite my full cup of tea -- but nothing I can't learn. The thing is though, with no car, like the other first company also requested, I would have a hard time fulfilling the job requirements.

Sure, I might find a way to take the bus to work everyday, but only to about a mile away at the closest stop. Somehow, walking a mile twice each day -- during the blustery winter months -- just doesn't excite me. And then, there would STILL be the issue of me not having a car.

So, unfortunately, I'm left squirming at the plate as I watch strike two slide right past me. No car, no bus, no job.

I still try to keep my hopes up though. Maybe I'll draw a walk. Either way, I think marketing jobs are moving out of the picture. Mostly becasue of necessity I suppose. But at least I tried. Somewhere out there, someone is looking for my combination of skills; I just haven't found that employer yet. And besides, life is a journey. Not every path is well-defined right? .... And what fun would a straight path with full visibility be anyway? :)

So the search continues.

I will have to say this though, I thank God for not only my skills and interests, but also for my ability to stretch a dollar and be thrifty. That has perhaps been the only way I have subsisted these past 4-8 weeks. When money is nil, and the fridge not too full, you find ways to make things work. The funny thing is, most people would go nuts in this situation, but me, ....I'm strangely calm and trusting. And yet things just barely work out.

Ok, maybe I really am well blessed.... just not in some of the areas that I'd like at the moment. :)

So, I guess that means the game isn't over yet. I'm still at bat, watching the wind-up, and awaiting the pitch. I can be patient, and I can certainly be persistant. I just hope this "At Bat" doesn't last forever. I guess we'll just have to see what Tuesday brings. :)

Have a blessed day, and until next time,

Your thankfully blogging friend,
-Jon

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Jon Baas

Blogging Since 2002!
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