June 20, 2017

Fred Mc Evoy was alive

Last Monday, Fredi killed himself. He was 59. He didn't want to be 60.

Winnipeg puddle photographer flies solo at gallery exhibit (CBC Manitoba)

We must have met on a film set, because those are the friends who connected us: a handful of grind house fans who spent a few years throwing their life savings and credit ratings at filming existential horrors. Fredi played an excellent evil priest like a good Irish atheist does.

He would have chatted me up, because he started conversations. I wish I remember how he did it or what story he used. Since he killed himself I've been going through memories, hoping to tack significance to moments now I know there won't be more.

Puddles of art (Global Winnipeg)

I vaguely remember studying him early on rather than listening to him. His accent was delightful and his authenticity was everything I wanted as an actor and, later, as a person. Fred was present when he spoke and when he listened. Yogis train for that kind of feat. Fred

Fred Mc Evoy Photography

That didn't make him an angel; the human heart isn't that good. He didn't forget Belfast, neighbours being blown up and boots on his neck. He whipped his cane at beggars who thought they could get aggressive with the crippled Irish guy.

He's hurt himself now, too, though it's put an end to the pain of a crushed body. A friend who knows him much better than I do stands by his choice. "He went out on his terms." I'm selfish. I miss him. I hate him for his absence.


Fredi never learned my dog's name. He'd only call her "my beauty" over and over.

This past year was rough. I started drinking to hurt myself. Fred saw. He'd sit beside me at the bar and tell me I was done and send me home.

Fredi would reach his hand as high as he could when he saw you across the square, a stretching wave.

July 14, 2015

The Hazards of Billeting a Storyteller

My first Fringe review is done and the festival hasn't even started yet.

Okay, it's not an official review. But I spent a good chunk of last night staying up listening to New York's Peter Aguero talk. Just listening, man, just listening. He's a professional storyteller performing at Venue 11 (Red River College) about the jagged mess of a relationship he had with his father.

Daddy Issues Trailer from Peter Aguero on Vimeo.

That's how much I care about you, Winnipeg audiences. I will test out performers before their shows open.

He's fantastic, by the way. Add "Daddy Issues" to your must watch list.

Happy fringing.

June 7, 2015

New York Notes

A year ago, Mel and I were in New York for the first time. It won't be the last; the city had us dancing to its tune before we'd crossed the second street.

I made notes during our week-long stay, with the intention of fleshing them out into a fuller blog post once we were home. Now it's been a year and this bare skeleton was still hanging in my smartphone. And I like it as it is. So much of New York lives in our imagination it seems silly to nail it down with adjectives and verbs.

Day 1 - arrival after tight flight,  subway, crowds, trish, homesick, restaurant,  groceries,  central park, baseball, steak, watched blue bloods and said hey look, we're there

Day 2 - sleeping in, Puerto Rican Parade, Starbucks, Moma, Don Anonios, waiter from Naples, Broadway and times Square, seeing the high line, Sleep No More, jazz after, walk home helping a german couple,  watch the Tonys

Day 3 - rain, Greenwich, Washington square, bookstore, Daily Show no go, run the hills of Central Park, pub after to see Rangers lose game 3

Day 4 - late start, buy tickets, walk to Guggenheim,  rush through Met, deli supper, All the Way, oh no I messed up Mel's pic with Bryan Cranston!

Day 5 - Grand Central, Macy's, cheap luggage at thrift store, deli, cooking pizza on gas oven, American news is odd, wine, dirty jokes from the theater porter, Realistic Jonses

Day 6 - morning run by reservoir in Central Park, Gangs tour, fake coffee for wifi, the gilroy, Rats!, rooftop supper, If/Then,  walk back in the rain

Day 7 - great start to the day, cleaning, central park - no boats :(, just imagine, ferry view, rainstorm, harlem jazz, good bye

There's so much more to do