cannot believe this is true. I just read an email and am beside myself.
Wedgwood Circle Angel Investment Group that I have hailed as an amazing since
they have a mission statement that Abilities United fits into wonderfully – I
mean eHarmony.com could not have matched us any better! And I made the
application deadline on August 29th despite not getting the
application until the evening of August 28th I was so happy and
feeling so good that this match would be accepted and I would have the
opportunity to present my business at their biannual investor
meeting/conference in LA at the end of October! This will do it. I have applied
to several Angels and Angel investment groups to be considered but none of them
have a mission or goal to help out companies in the arts, including films that
will have an overall affect on culture and or society like Wedgwood Circle does! And does Abilities
United Productions goals of “Breaking the Hollywood Stereotypes of Characters
and People with a Disability” not fit perfectly with that?
Is there any reason that you can think of that I, that Abilities United
Productions would be denied by Wedgwood with such a common Mission – with a
niche product that is universally appealing to all audiences – that would have
such an impact on American Cinema, which is a major part of American culture and affect society as a whole as we finally strip
down the inaccurate stereotypes that have been portrayed by the entertainment
media and help end the industry wide discrimination against performers with a
disability as has been the case for the entire history of the motion picture
industry? Where an authentic voice can finally be heard, instead of being
stomped on by well meaning but misguided able bodied people and corporations?
Hell no! Well that is until today when I got the Wedgwood Circle rejection email. I guess
Wedgwood is the same as the rest of the (current) Hollywood
machine! Why I thought this was going to be different I guess is like a child’s
innocence in the toy store at Christmas time! So I guess I will continue to
present to other companies, Angel investors and groups even though I cannot see
and have not seen any that would be so compatible as that of Wedgwood and
therefore maybe should begin to expect to be rejected, laughed at, denied,
ridiculed, and sneered at behind my back as they all wear a politically correct
mask so no one appears the truth in how they obviously feel about those with a
disability – like myself – that we are not worthy individuals and in fact are
nothing more then second or third class citizens with really good parking and a
drain on societies resources, time and energy for the worthy, capable to
participate in society, able bodied individuals! Afterall they have been everytime I present or try to present my mission and vision with Abilities United Productions – I have just chose to ignore them as they have, under false pretenses, dismissed me so easily.
So from now on I guess I should not be so optimistic and begin to see reality as I know so many have wanted to tell me over the past 12 years but I suspect do not want to hurt my feelings – so I should see reality and
go into each potential opportunity with the same pastey, fake smile and pretend to have the
feel good optimism as those that are sitting on the other side of the desk! At
least then we are all on the same page! This way I will not be so adament that they at least listen to the whole presentation so they can see how this is so much more then just another so called “unique” project that aspiring filmmakers try and sell them. That this is so thought out that I can answer every question and objection before it is even raised! After all I am so tired of trying to convince them just to listen past the words “disability” and no become so themselves as their ears immediately go deaf. Then they can deny me before hearing
the whole prospective and not feel bad when they say “so sorry
but cannot help at this time – but try again and good luck you have a worthy
cause!” That way they feel as if they have been equal opportunity individuals and corporations, after all they listened – they allowed me in the fornt door! Who am I to shatter their illusions? Now I can go into it with no expectations, I will feel
no surprises at being rejected!
I have been trying again and again for the past 12 years since I became a
paraplegic. I have run into every obstacle imaginable and I always took it on
as a challenge to overcome – to get around – to conquer! But this – this takes
Boy I have really done it this time – risking everything on putting my attention
on this launching of Abilities United Productions full time instead of spending
only the free time after my full time job! I am completely broke and have creditors chasing me right now as I expected this to have been running weeks ago with the promises I had from prosepctive investors who at the last minute pulled the old – I have no way of getting any money at this time routine! Before even looking at – as you guessed – the business plan which when you view the financial spreadsheets will see August as being when I expected to start our cash flow!
I did not expect that my ship would
just come in. In fact I built the damn ship – that is Abilities United
Productions – all I need is the sails – or the fuel for the engines to take
this ship out of the harbor – finally and show everyone how to make it despite
the challenges faced time and time again!
Do you know what motivates me to wake up every morning and get into the empty
wheelchair staring at me right next to my bed all the while knowing that I will
have major physical and emotional challenges all day long as I am dragging half
of my body around? It is taxing even though I ignore and not put too much weight on any of those in my daily routine because I do practice what a I preach in “Deal with it!” But my main motivation is and has been for years, my work. My work that I have
brought altogether and formed Abilities United Productions, created a complete
business plan with financial projections and detailed descriptions of how my
films are going to be different from all previous attempts and how they are
more then just a movie that has the starring character sitting in a wheelchair?
How I have planned every step in the marketing and distribution to increase the
chances of success! Yet everyday I get people and companies pretending to care,
acting like it is so admirable that I do what it is that I do – and that is if
I even get them to listen to the excitement, the passion and the facts that I
have gathered, built, and created into a very commercially viable product!
Is the saying that you can be whatever you want to be nothing more then a cliche? Or an old Army slogan?
A happy little saying we tell our children when they say they want to be an
astronaut, a policeman, the president, an airline pilot? One that after all these years and all
these challenges, work, blood, sweat and tears has come down to? That it is
only true in my mind? And after all isn’t that all that is necessary to make it
true – I believe so therefore I am! So in fact I am a successful writer,
director, producer of unique films that have an impact on culture and society
in a way that is similar to the impact that the filmmakers and the great actor
Sidney Poitier had on black characters and PEOPLE both black and white in the
1960’s? I must already be liberating the characters and actors with a
disability since that is what I have envisioned and worked towards and think in my mind for the past
On one hand I soooooo want to continue and brush this off just like I did with
all the ones in the past! Proving that I am that someone that has what it takes
to make things HAPPEN! Just like I truly believe I am and have believed all of
my life – even before I knew exactly what my place was in this crazy world. Now
I do know and have a lot of people who will benefit directly and society will
indirectly. Must push forward as I always do! And on the other hand – for the
first time – it seems like this must be a futile fight and therefore a waste of time.
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cannot believe that I am writing all of this here and that I will publish this
here on my blog because I am the last person who wishes to show any sign of
weakness, of questioning what it is I am doing, any vulnerabilities since I
must keep a positive face on this all and at all times! Otherwise it might fail and that is not an option to me. And for everyone’s sake so
that they will believe, even if common sense has them relying on believing in my believing it will happen, my optimism,
my vision, my passion, my dedication, sacrifices and work toward this as a
serious and worthy cause that can be and will be achieved. And because in
reality, it is my everything! I have sacrificed so much and placed so much
importance on achieving this mission and vision because it is so much a part of
who I am – in what I am – it is the passion of my life – and I cannot see
anything beyond the things I have set up as Abilities United Productions in my
life! Even my closest friends know how dear this is and how faithful I am to
staying positive and never showing any fear, any thoughts of possible failure,
any vulnerabilities……but……I guess if I were to admit it it is only showing that
I am human. Maybe?
Well since as I said earlier that I have risked everything in making this happen and no longer rely on it it happening someday as I work in my free time around the full time job and are now not able to find two dimes to rub together I guess I will not go and
get drunk so I can wallow in my self pity. Or repress it by going to a strip
club and at least pretend that shapely, beautiful women think of me as Mr. Stud and want to be with me since there are no strip clubs in this area of Utah (I do need to move back
home to SoCal)! Wow what I have I gotten into!
I guess that is a good thing
since it only leaves one option. The option to get back on the phone and call
people to the cause of Abilities United Productions that is dedicated to bring
together those of all Abilities United in “Breaking the Hollywood
Stereotypes of Characters and People with a Disability.” Even if that
“bringing together” remains just me – maybe, just maybe it will not be
for very long! And if I keep singing the other cliches in my head that keep me
going, like how you have to knock on a hundred doors and expect 99 to say no –
but that it only takes one to say yes – may need to be modified to say a
thousand doors with 999 that say no or maybe ten thousand doors since I have
been at this a long time and have already had too many “no’s” – but still I have to look for that door! I do believe
it exists. So who ever said that it isn’t good to be poor – must have been born
into wealth! Now I do not have time to go along with not having the money right
now to go buy a drink and get drunk or diving into a pool of gorgeous women who
all want me…well at least in my mind do and so long as I have enough cash in my pockets!
Again this is only leaving one option – to continue on with
the cause – otherwise there will not be much point in waking up tomorrow and
looking at my wheelchair staring at me! That is the way I see it – I have
always been a one way or the other, do or die, win or lose, all or nothing! So far it is nothing but my hopes, my dreams, my
work up to this point and really isn’t that all
I need? It is if I am ever going to find that door that I know exists but seems
to be hiding o rbe among the line of so many that they all look alike! Only one thing left to do, knock, knock!
Edited: I am adding this song to this blog entry for a good reason – I love the song and it has nothing to do with loving the television program that used it as a theme song! Speaking of which this is the shorter version that was used for the opening of the program. Listen to the words – they are perfect and I love them! I play this tune whenever I need a little reminder!