Sunday, July 27, 2008


Sorry for the rather stagnant nature of the blog this week. It has been very busy for me as I prep for the 2nd Annual Fearless Fest, coming up on August 24th.
Also, the last month-and-a-half have been trying for me physically, to say the least. Had a great trip to Winnipeg and back (and all parts in-between) with Theatre in the Raw on it's tour of one-acts, but you may not realize that i had a bit of a fall while I was in "the Peg". I tripped while walking along one of that city's notorious ramshackle sidewalks (comparable only to
Spain's El Camino del Rey), and landed on my left arm, pushing my elbow in and up under my rib.

This "lifted" rib was painful the first couple of weeks, but i only had two incidents where i really suffered. The pain for me was much like holding an electric fence - like the kind used for cattle, etc. - through a few jolts, pain that lasted a good three hours. Thank god for the troupe's chanteuse, Michelle A. Richard, and her Ibuprofen!
Aside from a little back pain now and then while bending (the ribs are connected to the spine and a lot of muscle tissue back there), THAT INJURY is mostly forgotten.
My newest escapade, however makes my original fall a pale concern in comparison:
Friday morning i was hurrying to catch a bus and taking out the trash to the curb, when, par for the course, i tripped over a crack in the sidewalk out front of my house and plunged headlong into the path of a street-cleaner trundling along against the curb.
Truthfully I can't remember what actually happened at that point. As i landed, I barely recall looking over and seeing the metal brushes spinning and spitting debris at me.
The next thing i know I'm lying on my side in an oily, smelly, filthy box, disoriented and feeling extremely nauseous. The noise was deafening and the wash of filth sloshed back and forth and ran continually over me. The only light in the box came from the drain that let the water out the back of the sweeper.
I found a woman's shoe and tried banging to get the driver's attention but he couldn't hear me. It wasn't until he stopped for coffee at Blenz on Broadway that he cut the engine and heard me banging.
I'm not sure how long I rode along to tell the truth. The gas fumes were making me sick and dizzy.
The driver and another man who had been waiting for a bus pulled me out and stayed with me until the firemen and cops finally came.
I got a ride to VGH, was checked over and let go. I'm still recouping, but am doing much better. I have to say, I was pretty shaken up. Amazingly, i came out of the whole ordeal with only a scratch on my shin that i probably got from the initial fall. Aside from that, my glasses were scratched a bit.
Thanks to everyone who saw me on the newsclip via the
link on the Commercial Drive blog and who sent me their good wishes and concern. I watch it and still can't believe it happened. No wonder I don't like to take out the garbage.

But I'm back in the saddle and spent yesterday at Summer Dream Literary Festival. My co-host on Wax Poetic, Diane Laloge and I did a mock radio interview with long-time friend and fantastic poet Susan Cormier.

I'm in the process of throwing up some pics and maybe some video of the event on our Wax Poetic blog.

I was very fortunate last Thursday to have an incredible night out on the town starting out at Timbre with Michelle A. Richard's first CD launch. She did an amazing job recreating much of the CD's feel and sound. Her players, Lawrie Koyle on electric and acoustic guitars, drummer and percussionist Richard Brown and acoustic bassist, Russell Sholberg, were right with her and gave the whole performance great depth. My favorite moment had to be Richard's rendition of "River", by Joni Mitchell. I was close to tears. Michelle puts so much heart and feeling into her music, that it is hard not to get choked up sometimes. She is such a powerhouse.

After closing down Timbre, next stop was the Libra Room, one of my favorite haunts on the Drive. We were just in time to see Monica Lee do her last set with new drummer Michael Simpson, a familiar Drive face. The trio sizzled as always, serving up a great mixture of covers like Tom Petty and originals like her awesome, "Down on the Drive". Smokin'!

Notable too was Jesse Waldman, an amazing talent on the guitar.

Blog Update:

I'm happy to report that by the end of this month Commercial Drive - Live! will have had 25,000 visitors. That means over 1000 visitors a month are checking out the blog to see what's happening on the Drive, and about a quarter of you are repeat readers. As a matter of fact, CBC Radio even called me the other day, asking me if I had any info about a story they were considering (that was before my street-cleaner episode). This tells me that people are starting to take notice of the Drive. Are you?

By the way, I'll be live on the Drive on Sunday, at the first Artful Sunday of the season. There is always great music and interesting things to see! More details here. >>>

Thanks again to Charlie Kiers for his generous support which helps keep the blog running and you entertained and informed!

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