Wednesday, August 31, 2005

new pics

Chicago Jewish Theatre presents a concert version of "Kuni-Leml"

Eric from circesteem called me yesterday to confirm some measurements so he could get started on the tight rope. It was going to be 3 1/2 feet tall. But I decided to make it only 3 feet tall. The taller it is the wider the base has to be. And I didnt want my head to be above the lights. I figure if I really need it to be taller someday I can put it ontop of something.
And we talked about length. He said he could definately make it longer but it would require getting a middle support bar custom engineered which would require more time and money, two things I dont have. So I had to go with the standard length which is a little over 10 feet. But thats ok two. Sometime down the road I could always have that piece engineered. I cant wait to see it. It will be completely raw unfinnished steel. Which is what I want.

Love, Dean.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Anthony's new pic

Check out anthony's new pic. We were testing out the new canon. He actually made it over the border.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Deany B Update

My wig is looking pretty neat. Yeah thats right, I wear wig in the show. You got a problem with that?

There's still some contoversy over the tight rope.

I'm having a stand alone unit built for cheaper than it cost to rig on. It's areal nice stand alone unit and Paul of Circesteem said I could borrow his for a couple nights for rehearsal until I get mine.

Andrew was there again this saturday. I cant wait to see his new pics.

Friday, August 26, 2005

I'm the mystery Daredevil!

Nobody shall know who I am. Ha ha!

Thursday, August 25, 2005

New Pics

Andrew's new pictures are awesome.


Tried to Fast

So I tried to do this master cleanse fast, I hadn't eaten in two days. I didn't feel too bad, mostly just tired. I had a lot of trouble with the workout and moving the ramps. Then Helena and Ryan both talk to me seperatly about my not eating. I totaly agreed with them that this was a bad week for me not to eat. So I'm eating again. Not that exciting but now you know.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Smoke (cough cough)

Ryan just rode up the ramp on the bike. It totally made it. With a slightly longer runway and maybe starting off on a small downward incline I think he's going to catch some major air. Now if we can just secure the live shark, we're set. We're still trying to track down an anaconda.

We have an actuall "script", of sorts, now. It's neat to see the whole show on paper. Some things still may or may not be possible. I love working on a show that is beyond current capacity. It makes things so much more heightened and unpredictable. But the catch is, you can't be a pussy.

We are still seeking more sponsors. I really think this show is going to be well attended so if any of you Blog readin' folk are teetering on the edge, now is the time to claim your daredevil realestate before all the good spots are taken. The audience will want us so bad that if your name or logo is on us they will want you.

Andrew Collings was in rehearsal taking pictures tonight. I can't wait to see his pictures. He's officially sponsoring us. So, thats awesome.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Stuff is happening (Dean)

I wrote the following as an email to the director. And then I realized that it would be a good blog entry (with some editing for tone):

Just keeping you updated.

I'm talking to the Flyhouse guy tommorow morning. I
emailed him and told him we're going into tech. So I'm talking with
him tommorow to see when they can do this thing.

And I got another sponsor from the Andersonville
Development Corporation.

I saw flexible aluminum vent tubing at home depot, 25
feet for $11.99. I couldn't pick any up because I
didnt have my wallet on me. But now we know it exists
in the world.

My personal goal is to get $200 dollars more in sponsorship.

I got all my wig supplies and it's coming along

Maybe this email is all crap that should go on the
blog instead of in an email. Oh well, I just wanted
to tell somebody.


Friday, August 19, 2005

Tough times for Daredevils

Hang in there.

Oh My Head

Wow Folks, I'm hurt, and probably more than I have ever been. And the odd thing is I haven't a clue what to blame it on.
My head has been numb for six days and I am in the process of going to doctors and having xrays and mri's. And no one seems to know so far what is causing just my head to be tingling. It is hard to wake up with a tingling head, I just want to go back to sleep. They have ruled out severe things like Stroke and blood clots but that only makes me feel a bit better. And like I said, there is no one thing that I did in my over active life that I can blame it on. I can't say, "oh yeah, my head hitting that wall, that hurt!" I have been taking it more easy lately and all I can think is that it has been caused by all the stress of all the shows and exercising on my own and the constant bike rideing and running, and worrying, and forcing my body into odd shapes in TML. I have only guesses and no answers. I will probably have funnier posts soon, like about how I tried to explain what I am doing in Daredevils to the doctor in the ER. That was pretty funny. and how I panicked at rehearsal and said I have to go home and walking out and realizing I had no way home, so I just jumped on any bus and had to end up walking about three miles home, with my head numb. Luckily all my things in the show are pretty cemented, so this time off I have to take should be ok.

ps, I thought almost drowning might have something to do with the pain, but the doctor said unless I went unconscious under the water, he doesn't think so.

More later.


Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Technical Stuff

Last night we worked on Anthony's launcher. Scary. We have to figure out a way to crank it back far enough to really launch him through the air. Heazy duty surgical tubing is neat.

We also broken a million beer bottles. It took forever and I think we're anloy half way done. I tried walking on it with shoes on and it was so scary. I'm having doubts, but I still feel pretty brave about it. Or rather... stupid about it. I could feel the glass smaching and it was loud and I dont know what I'm going to do.

I cant wait to test Ryan's motocycle tonight.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The New Postcard

To spank to.

Tightwire closer still (Dean)

I got the initial quote for the tightwire. You'll be happy to know that it's doable. But only if I can raise more money and most likely give up my pay for the show.

I was going to post the cost, but I didn't know if that would be bad and make the Flyhouse mad at me. I don't want to piss them off because to me they are awesome and they hold my future in the palm of their rough carpenter hands. I'm still talking to them about possible sponsorship. If anyone wants to make a donation to the cause of my tightwire, then email me and I'll tell you how much I need to raise. Once negotiations are through and I get a final cost I will post it.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Anthony one of the DD

So I'm finally going to write something. It's 2:02 sunday morning I've been working on the opening song all night I have started over about 6 times, as of right now I love it. Now I have to put it to the rest of the cast I hope they like it too. I don't want to have to worry about this anymore my brain hurts and I still need to write more for the human arrow. I hope I don't die tomorrow. Or I guess this morning, I guess some guy has an idea about attaching garage door springs to launch me. I hope Ryan got another mattress.

Friday, August 12, 2005

And Finally, When The Urgings of the Little Shouting Pierson on My Shoulder Became Deafening...

...I decided to blog.

I can tell no one knows this, but this is the most fun I've had working on a show at the Neo-Futurists. 43 Plays For 43 Presidents was pretty successful, but really sucked to work on. A 60 Minute History of Humankind was incredibly rewarding and didn't suck at all to work on, but as Ryan is learning, it's highly stressful to be at the reigns of a project while working for a company that provides little in the way of support.

So I'm a Daredevil and I'm enjoying it. But there's stuff going on in my life that keeps my head elsewhere most of the time. Trying to have a baby, getting ready to start another Day Job, or possibly move to Southern Illinois and start another one later in a place where it's hard to find work, or possibly stay here a year. Health insurance seems to weave its way in (and alarmingly often out of) every plan, and our plans change daily. I may even move out of town while I'm doing this show. I might stay at the Heart O' Chicago on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights and then go back and forth to Carbondale during the week to be with my wife and dog.

But anyway, this show has been fun. Ryan is worried. I can't tell him not to be worried, though I've tried. Still, we're about on track. Every show I do, I can't ever imagine getting it done on time, and sometimes you're working on the set or something minutes before the audience comes in, like some makeover show on TLC. But everything works out in time for the reveal. So it goes.

My work in the show is very personal and very explicit. I'm fascinated with the kind of daredevil who feels compelled to prove something to himself, who's not just out for attention. I liken them to people who actually play to win because they just really want to win for their own sake--proving to themselves that if they're going to be in the field, they're going to play as hard as they can. In my mind, I think that the difference between people who show up to the dance of life, and those who snottily insist that they refuse to show their faces anywhere The Electric Slide will be played, is analagous to the difference between people who play to win and the people who don't. And the people who play to win, remind me of the daredevils who take risks because they are compelled to test themselves.

It all started while watching some Olympic gymnastic event not so long ago. There was this coach on TV saying that he thought his gymnast had what it took to win the gold, but only if she was really "ready to win". I didn't know what he meant by ready to win for a few days but I couldn't get it out of my head because it felt important. Then it hit me:

I'm not ready to win. Anything.

If you give yourself to something, truly at 100%, and then fail to win that gold medal, it would be a profoundly disturbing look at the limits of your capabilities. As long as you can say to yourself "yeah, well, the Olympics are stupid anyway and that thing's just a hunk of metal on a ribbon", you're setting yourself up to lose, because really going for it and failing, would mean you weren't good enough to succeed.

And didn't I use the excuse at the top of this post that I've got a lot on my mind? I mentioned right away that I didn't think the guys would know how much fun I was having. That's because I'm not always there. Removing yourself from The Dance isn't a matter of concious choice as it is habit. I am rarely where I am. While walking, I am thinking of where I've been or where I'm going.

But when it comes to the live performing of this show, I think I'm ready to win. I'm ready to give it 100%, even if before and after the show my mind is elsewhere. And even if I come face to face with the limits of my abilities, I'm ready to be a daredevil.


The tightwire saga cont. (Dean)

I'm glad John didnt die. But it really would have help our ticket sales.

I met with Mark from The Chicago Flyhouse. Rigging a tight rope in the space is easily acheivable. The Flyhouse does all this amazing rigging stuff. I'm sure a job like this is rinky dink to them. But he said he could do it easy. Mark was very profesional. He looked at the space. He's drawing up the quote. And it all depends on that quote. It would be so perfect because the wire would span the entire length of the stage. The audience wouldnt see anything but 1 single straight wire spanning the whole stage. And I would climb over the seats stage right; and walk all the way across. When I think about it I have to take a shit. My dream would be realized. I would be just like Phillipe walking between the twin towers. All of the obsesion and planning. But, it still might cost a million dollars.
Calling all people with money:
Help Dean achieve the impossible by sponsoring him and Daredevils. If I get enough money I will actually be able to rig an aestically perfect tightwire that spans the entire space.
Email him at if interested. Make checks payable to The Neo-Futurists.

Dear God,
Help me.


Short, some would say ironic, drowning story

So, my themes developing are Glass and Water and their relation to fear, trust, and historical daredevils.
I take a few days vacation to visit my girlfriend in Massachusettes, who is freshly back from Russia.
Her family invites me to join them on a boat trip. Wow, that's great!
So, I'm having fun hanging with my girlfriend's sister's husband, who is also named John. John decides to swim back to the boat that has lowered its anchor about... I don't know 200 feet away from shore, and I say, "sure, I'll join you." Half way there I realize that this swim is quickly draining my energy, and the direction of the current is taking me farther away from the boat, and much farther from the shore. I lay on my back to float awhile, but the waves are so large that they crash over me, water and salt fill my mouth, and I start going down, down, down. I start dog paddeling but the mist from the wind fills the air and I can't breathe, I start going down, down, down. I call out to John and say, "Man, I can't make it!" He thinks I'm joking so I repeat, "Man, I can't make it! For Real!" He gets an odd look on his half submerged face, and tells me to calm down. He is doing a good job, he is a little older than me, and I easily see him as a older nurturing sibling, but I am still going down, down, down. Now I start really panicking, and begin reviewing all the stupid things I did in my life, I start wondering what my girlfriend's family is going to think if I drown, or live. I feel screwed either way. A smaller boat, used to bring people from the shore to the anchored boat passes by, and I yell "Help", and John thinking he is helping by boosting my confidence says, "No, It's all right, we'll be fine." And I yell, "No, he's wrong, I'm not fine! Get over here!" The small boat circles around me and I grab onto a handle on the front and the boat guy starts bringing me to the larger boat. I hang on tight to the handle, and I bump into it occasionaly, and then grab tighter. I later find out that, I could have been pulled under the boat and cut to shreds by the propelar. That would have been great!
So, I'm still alive, and my girlfriends family still appears to like me.
I came back to rehearsal today, and told the guys that I almost drowned. I relayed the story, and we all laughed.
They said, "That would have been wonderful, the Water Daredevil drowns." It may have been some good publicity, but I'm pretty sure that all parties involved are mostly happy that I am alive.


Thursday, August 11, 2005

I'm obsessed.

I saw a guy stealing a bike yesterday and I wasnt very daredevily. He was scary, but he didnt mess with me because I puffed up my chest a clenched my jaw when I walked passed him. I totally busted him. I was kind of hoping for some confrontation. But there wasnt any. Amber's bike got stolen less than a week ago. And he was wearing a FBI shirt. As if people will think this dirt bag is actually an FBI agent who leaggally confiscating this bike for national security. Then he pretended to ride on it it like it was his. While still holding his huge steel clippers, while the SUV that took off when I walked by probably drove around the block. I'm mad at that guy.

I found this picture of this kid and now I'm obsessed with it. The picture is how I feel like in this show. Cold, slightly embarrassed, and on the spot and if I can just get my mind off of those things for one second during the show I might just live out a fantasy.

I'm meeting with a guy from the Chicago Flyhouse tommorow. If he cant help me, then I'll be a tightpipe walker. But not just any tightpipe walker, the worlds greatest tightpipe walker.

Hey someone should post our awesome photos up here. They are awesome.

Ryan's First Blog Entry of All Times

Okay. I've never writen a post to a blog before, and am nervous about it. i write plays for Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind, and this whole crazy Daredevils show was my idea to do. But, writing to a blog. I don't know about that.

So, we are all working on this show trying to do stunts and acrobatics and stuff that we weren't able to do when we started talking about the show in June. I thought it would be great if we got five guys together with the challenge of pulling off stuff that we had learned how to do over the summer, with the real risk of failure on stage.

Did you look at these pictures yet? They are great!

but the thing about failure and risk and all that junk is that it is freaking terryfying. And now that it is getting down to the wire (today is August 10, 2005, we've got less than a month to pull it all together) maybe the real risk is trying to pull off the show in the first place.

(sometimes when i am not sure how to spell a word i will type what i think might be the correct spelling into a search engine, and then laugh when, "did you mean: terrifying?" pops up.)

In a way you just try and throw the craziest people you know in a room for a couple of months and hope for the best.

Thanks for reading Ryan's First Blog entry of All Times. It might be the last of all times, or not.

(this blogging thing seems a little dougie howser to me. cue music, and quirky neighbor friend crawling in through window.)

(i mean, "did you mean: doogie howser?")

Why all the parentheses?


okay here goes, I am going to click Publish Post.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Nobody else will blog beside Me and John.

I started working on a wig today. It's coming along nicely.

I found a really funny website about walking on glass. They have a mantra to say before you do it. I think I'll say it in the show.

I have a key.
I may do anything I want.
My body is elastic and flexible.
I give all of my pain, illness and discomfort to the glass.

I'm tired and mad. Let me just say, if I end up covered head to toe in $300 worth of logos and ads and end up walking on a $15 metal pole from home depot, looking like a chump, because that's all the money and resources available to me... I'm gonna be pissed.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Your Logo on a RAMP or JUMPSUIT

Hey a quick note before I launch into a donation opportunity.
Last night I stayed up late drinking white wine and surfing the net for stuntmen and escape artists, and I found some information based on a hunch I had about Houdini. I can't say what it is, but this info helped me to relate a few of the random pieces I had going in the show about Amazin Joe from Fresno and my own propensity towards hurting myself, and hurting myself worse when my body says stop, and I keep going.

Anyway here is a way to help the Daredevils:

Hello everybody. I am writing as a representative of the Neo-Futurist Daredevils. We are in rehearsals for our daredevil, jackassery, sideshow, gymnastic extravaganza.

In an attempt not to have to cut corners on what our show needs in order to make it the best we can, we are offering a cool way for people to donate money to the cause. Like the style of sports stars, stuntmen, racecar drivers, etc. We are decorating our ramp and our costumes with paid advertising and names of persoanl donators.

The money accumulated will help pay for the flight suits, our ramps, a vehicle we have to construct to shoot Anthony, of the Monkeyes, across the stage unharmed like a human cannonball, we also have to purchase a mini bike or mini-scooter for Ryan, and we have to construct a portable tight wire for Dean, a large fish tank for John to dunk his head in and nightly we have to pay for the hottest curry in town for Andy.

So for those of you interested contact any of the Daredevils and we will give you details.

Right now a 25 Dollar donation will get your name or a company logo onto one of our jumpsuits. (the simpler the logo the better. or if you have it on a piece of fabric like a shirt that can be worked with easily.) A 50 Dollar donation will get your name or company logo painted onto our ramp. There may be smaller ways of accepting names and companies for a lesser donation of around 15 Bucks, but I don't have an anwer for that yet, but I doubt we will refuse the funds. Also each Jumpsuit, six in all, will primarily feature one company or
personal sponsor, with a large logo. This 50 Donation will go directly to the paying of the suit. All the other 25 dollar donations for the suits will be smaller logos on sleaves, torso, and legs. We all think it is a great idea, and think it is a wonderful and also funny way to let our friends support us. It would be nice to get confirmation within the next couple of weeks, but quite frankly we'll probably take them up and through the run, if you are one of those late donator people.

Thank you in advance.

Also we have a site if you are interested in keeping up with the progress of the show.

Please forward this to any interested parties and give them my e-mail address.

John Pierson
The Neo-Daredevils

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Dean here.

Andrews picture are awesome. When he was taking them I wa slike "Man, I betcha this looks boring". But they look neat.
I practiced yesterday on a wire at the midnight circus space with Ariele's instruction. I was so much better. I made it all the way across the wire many times. I have to really work on staying forward, moving forward, flopping my arms and wrists, keeping my arms above my head, keeping my torso stiff, sliding my foot out and staying low. And it really helps when I take big steps and really lunge forward. I used ballet slippers, so this time my feet didnt hurt so bad, and I could practice for longer. I can wait to do it again. I'm addicted. I love it because it feels like I'm doing something impossible. My mind is saying this cant happen it wont work. But there I am walking back and forth on a bouncy thin little wire. I love it. I want to be able walk backwards and eventually lay down on my back. And then for my grand finale I'll bring some girl up on the wire with me and have sex with her up there.

I was thinking for my first part about coming out in high heels. My stunts seem to involve allot of walking. Origianlly I wanted to do the entire show in drag. So the high heels thing is only natural. Cant wait for rehearsal tonight. I like the new work out, the four square, and I get to practice walking on my pipe. This is going to be a fun show. I hope I dont punture my kidney and die before the run is over.

You other guys better start blogging... Ryan!

Monday, August 01, 2005


Hey we had a photographer, Andy Collings, come to rhearsal a couple of days ago and he took some great photos and played a great game of Four Square with us. These pictures are of Ryan trying to work out a ramp jump with a minibigwheel. Pictures of a estreme workout our athletic trainer friend Heather Riordan worked out for us. Boy am I hurty all over!! And pictures of Dean practiving his balance on a pipe, and Anthony devising ways for his human cannonball, and Ryan and I jumping around on our newly built ramps.

check them out