Sunday, December 30, 2007

about to go back to work

So I've been a bit absent for a couple weeks. I was on vacation and really shut down. It's blown by too quickly as it always does.
I just posted information about the sidekick position available on our show. You can get there from the mainpage at www.jbandsandy.com
I'm excited to find the right person for this job. I think what we have lined up is going to be a very fun process and a great avenue for some who has never done radio to get their chance.
One of my goals for 2008 is to be much more active on this blog. I hope many of you find it useful and entertaining.
It's been a good vacation, other than getting this damn lung infection that everyone seems to have. I'm trying to shake it because we have our first bike race of the season on Jan 19th! I'm not ready.
I've been wearing out some cd's on the break. Eddie Vedder "Into the Wild". The new Amy Winehouse and the new Subdudes. Killer stuff.
I'm feeling very mellow right now. Built the first fire in a year. Listening to Eddie Vedder, trying to get some work done... but really just trying to get my brain working again because of the break.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

My Holiday Letter

2007 was what I will always recall as a growth year. I set out with new goals to grow as a person and stumbled into more than I anticipated. Maybe that’s something that’s common on the year that you turn 40.

My goals were simple.

I set out to read more, falling short of my goal of 24 books or two a month. I ended up somewhere around 15, which was far better than the 3 or 4 I read the previous year. Some highlights included Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, Mindfulness in Plain English by Bhante Gunaratana, and new books from two of my idols, Woody Allen and Steve Martin.

I had the goal to be more charitable. I won’t go into details but I’m still following my path to increase my contributions annually. I don’t miss the money and hope I helped somebody, somewhere.

I’ve continued my pursuit of fitness and nutrition. It’s amazing how motivating it can be when you have a daughter that you want see grow up as long as possible.

I set out to minimize my life by getting rid of things that I felt were a bit much or extravagant. Reduce the clutter. I raffled off my ’63 Ford pickup only to turn around and win a ’58 Pontiac. What the hell was that? I’ll have to find a creative way to find a new home for this one as well.

I wanted to write. My intention has never been to become a writer, I only wanted to challenge myself and enhance the fun I have on the radio. I have been very fortunate to have been given this opportunity first by Austin Monthly Home and also Rare Magazine. Both of these publications are a “must read” for Austinites and run by great people who take a genuine interest in this city and the product that they put out. It’s a difficult thing to do and what they do is admirable.

I also had the goal to discover new music. I still love the look and feel of a cd, so I made monthly visits to Waterloo to shop. Some highlights of bands that really had an impact on my this year are Phoenix, Donovan Frankereiter, What Made Milwaukee Famous, The Small Stars, Lucinda Williams, Band of Horses, Eddie Vedder, Kings of Leon, The Silverspun Pickups and just for good measure, on each monthly visit I would pick up another copy of Sugarcane by Autumn… just in case I lost the last one. I don’t know her last name, but she sure is talented.

I told myself I needed to be more “present”. This is difficult to explain. Whenever I was with somebody I cared about, I made a very conscious effort to be there 100%, which in he past, I wasn’t very good at. It’s made me better at many relationships but also it can be dangerous in that it makes you very “aware” of who was not “present” with you. I still have a lot of growth and learning ahead of me with this.

Not to sound cliché, but being “present” gives you a wonderful opportunity to “stop and smell the roses”. Well worth it.

As for my co-workers reaching their goals…. It’s apparent that 2007 was very good to all of you. I’m proud of Sandy for having the courage to get married and to put a lot of things behind him. It’s been his biggest growth year in the 12 years I’ve known him.

Digitz has grown… mostly at being comfortable with who he is, which is not easy. I wish him well in his pursuit of Brad the Bachelor.

I’m proud of Autumn for having the courage to leave…. And there absolutely are not enough words or time to give the details how much you will be missed.

I have yet to put together my goals for 2008. I’ll work that out over the break. Don’t be surprised if next year to see a more spiritural, Zen, JB. Don’t worry, everything will still “Piss me off”, but I’ll be more pleasant, I promise. I always refer to a card that is above my visor that says “All my relationships are harmonious”. I’ve been striving for that and hope to be better at accomplishing that, next year.


Monday, December 10, 2007

My resignation letter

It is with great sadness that I write this letter to inform you all that I will be leaving the JB and Sandy Morning Show after our final show on Friday. I had always assumed that I would do radio until they would no longer have me, but I may have come across the opportunity of a lifetime that I have to explore.

To those who know me, it would come as no surprise that I would choose to pursue this dream… for those of you who don’t know me, I’ll fill you in.

I have finally rounded up the funding to write, produce and direct a play about a Women’s Correctional Facility. Many of you know that this is a dream of mine… and it has to be done. I love women. I love prisons and therefore I love womens prisons.

It’s somewhat of a spoof on Women’s prison movies, but loosely based on reality. If you’ve ever seen any of the “Caged Heat” movies, picture them with more pillows, more lingerie, more shower scenes, more shanking and a lot of song and dance numbers.

This project has been in the works for over 10 years, but we have finally overcome some obstacles that have given our investors the confidence then needed.

A key to launching this project was securing top notch talent. As of Dec 1st, we have secured in writing the theatrical talents of Tina Yothers who you might recall from Family Ties or the movies Spunk: The Tonya Harding Story.

We have also secured the likes of the incredibly talented Mindy Cohn, most remembered for her role as Natalie on Facts of Life. It was hard to lure her away from her current voiceover work as Velma in the Scooby Doo direct to DVD voiceovers.

We also needed to secure a “pretty face” for the lead role of Janet, an honor roll student and captain of her University Cheerleading squad, who intentionally robbed a Fabrick Store so she could go behind bars to be reunited with her half sister that she hadn’t seen since they were three, who was put in prison for embezzling from her employer, the local Food Bank.

We expect rotating cameo’s as Janets cellmate from Rumor Willis (daughter of Demi Moore and Bruce Willis), Jill Whelan, who played Vicky on the Love Boat, and Susan Hawk, who you might recall as the truck driver from the Chapera tribe on Survivor Borneo.

The play will also feature Whoopi Goldberg… She won’t act in the play but will be voted as the celebrity all the prisoners would like to visit most at the holiday social.

Another thing needed to launch this project. we have finally figured out a portable system to have running water in a theater atomosphere. Shower scenes are a crucial part of the womens prison culture and expected from theater goers. We have, with the help of Al Gore, finally figured out how to use the smallest amount of water, purify and it and recycle it for the next show. We thought we had this mastered, but had overlooked the quick turnaround need for matinee shows on weekends. With the help of some MIT students, we believe we can pull this off, even though we needed the water to run red with blood after a shower fight scene in the third act.

What put the project over the top is that I have finally gotten written commitments on the musical soundtrack. It will be written and performed by both Pat Benetar and Kenny G. We needed the musical styling of Kenny for the softer scenes, such as the shower or when Janet explores the love of another woman for the the first time. We wanted the explosiveness of Pat for that “get out of your seat, clap your hands sort of feel”, especially in the final scene where Janet finally get’s her long lost half sister out of solitary confinement, uses her cheerleading moves to vault her over the prison wall, only to die in a fire, started by a rival gang. We wanted the audience to leave shocked, exhausted, sad and also exchanging high fives in the parking lot.

I don’t want to give too much away. I hope that this play will eventually make it’s way to Broadway and then back to Austin where I can visit the Autumn and Sandy Show for a candid interview about the play showing at the Bass Concert Hall.

Oh, by the way, the play will be called “Slammer Slut Soiree, A Requiem if Four Acts”

See you there.

Sandy's Evel Mask

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