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KeithSpeak - July 2023


July 1, 2023
If you say you're set in your ways and can't change, you won't. If you believe that you can, you will. See, the things you tell yourself will reveal to you both your freedom and your limitations. Are you listening?
July 2, 2023
She's disappointed in her husband. For whatever reason, even though they have no kids, he's all caught up in the drag-shows-are-corrupting-our-children controversy. He's all steamed about trans kids, trans adults, trans anything. She says he used to be a sweet, tolerant man, but now he's a raging Republican Karen screaming about useless shit that has nothing to do with their lives. She's disappointed. Where is the man she married? Who is this asshole who's replaced him?
July 3, 2023
Recipe for disaster:
1 cup of impending doom
2 Tbsp. of drama
1 tsp. of confusion interspersed with unexpected moments of terror
½ cup of misunderstanding
½ cup of pleading your innocence or ignorance
3 tsp. of accepting your fate
1 stick of butter to assuage your wounds
let the whole shebang simmer until you're done.
Serves 1
July 4, 2023
I am going out of the country tonight. I will be gone a week. I will not have access to a computer, so no book orders fulfilled, no e-mails answered, no posts to KeithSpeak until my return. Is this nice? Is this fair? You made it all the way here just to find out I'm gone. So hollow, no?
July 11, 2023
I'm back. What a wild, wonderful, wacky trip. Of course I can't go into too many details without incriminating myself, but I will say that I saw several famous people do many embarrassing things (the wacky part), watched a firework show that sent an errant flaming missile into a residential house, torching their front porch and lighting the front door on fire (the wild part), and to cap it all off, somehow, got bumped up into first class on a long flight to nowhere without my doing a thing to make that happen (the wonderful part). Anyway, I'm here again and ready to serve. We's back to normal we are.
July 12, 2023
Gold was found. People were murdered. The trail led to Maurice and Mandy Holt. They fled. The coppers followed. But the gold was heavy and weighed down their whip something fierce. There was no way to outrun the police, so Maurice pulled the car over to the side of the road and when the law stopped, Mandy opened fire and killed every last one of 'em. Including Maurice. Accidentally. She wasn't a very good shot. About a week later, bored with her bars, Mandy Holt went on to invent the mudflap. We can't even remember the date. But it happened today, in history.
July 13, 2023
So the Screen Actors Guild is set to go on strike alongside the Writers Guild of America. Get used to reruns, kiddies. The issues are streaming and AI. But here in Canada, things are just ticking along in the film and television industry. My phone has been ringing. Here is a conversation I had with a friend, an American screenwriter I've known for decades.
-- Hey man, what's up.
-- Darin, how's it going. You guys have been on strike for months now.
-- It's getting grim, Keith. Money is getting tight.
-- Do you need my help?
-- Not yet, thanks. They say we're in for the long haul though. Each side is entrenched.
-- You working on anything at home?
-- Nah, I've been too depressed. We're just eating into our savings and it's really stressing Sally out.
-- Who's Sally?
-- My agent.
-- Well, how's Maggie taking it?
-- Maggie doesn't live here anymore. Sally does.
-- You're dating your agent?
-- More like a live in situation.
-- Is that ethical?
-- I'm going broke. Who cares about ethics. You working up there in the frozen north?
-- Yeah.
-- Can I write up there? We're sister guilds. Can I just come into your territory and get work?
-- What if I don't want you here?
-- Ha ha, funny boy.
-- Yeah, you can join our guild.
-- Can I use your agent?
-- No.
-- Come on.
-- I like our long distance relationship, Darin. You know, me in Canada, you way down there in LA.
-- Can I move in with you?
-- No.
-- Can Sally move in with you?
-- Sure.
July 14, 2023
"Growing up, if I had known there was more than two genders I don't know what I would have done and who I woulda done it to." - Bongo Bill Mazurski
"The old range looked the part but I wondered what kind of meat had been cooked in it." - Simcha Seville
"You can fool me once 'cause I ain't that smart, but try a second time and, heck, who am I kidding, I'd fall for it again." - Billy Henry
"Gary, is that you?" - Martha Melville
"We don't care what the law says, for rich people, jurisdiction is subjective." - Harold and Ginny Belvedere
"Always be alert, especially when you expect your date to pay for her share and she stiffs you for the whole thing including paying the babysitter off at the end and I'll tell you what, the sex wasn't even that good." - Vinny Capresee
"If you can sacrifice a virgin into a flaming volcano, brother, yer standing too close." Fireman Fred Mazurski (Bongo Bill's brother)
"In the small minds of godless heathens, there is always a war with attraction to the forbidden...their succulent, soft skin, high pitched voices...and no matter what you've heard, or what the papers have printed, I humbly assert that this perversion is the furthest thing from my mind. Is too." Reverend Donny of the Deluded Mind Mega Church of Bristol, Tennessee.
"There's another cute one! Daddy, over here! Sizzle sizzle, baby! There are lots of men out there, I just don't know which one to pick!" Evangeline Kitty
"Ok look, I'm getting beat up all over social media for that last quote. Perhaps to the uggos it sounded arrogant, but I am a hot chick - sizzle sizzle baby! - who gets hit on like 5 times a day and I just don't know if they're attracted to my mind or my bra size. How can you tell?" - Evangeline Kitty
"Dear Evangeline, after reading your quotes, I can fully attest that it's your bra size." - Professor Alan Jodot
"It shot up like a rocket and scared me to death and I soiled my pants, but it was a good kind of scare, you know?" - Roger French
"Mrs. Martin and I request that you get off our lawn. Thank you." - The Martins
July 15, 2023
How is it to take a meeting in my industry?
It was 10 in the morning and he was on his third vodka gimlet. He was supposed to consider pitches for a feature film that his company wanted to produce. He snorted two lines of coke and started rolling around the room. In his jacked up stupor, he let on that his wife just left him, that he was a mess because of it, and to please excuse his day drinking, drug taking and poor uninterested attitude. But I've travelled to meet this guy, spent time and money to meet this guy, spent hours of my creative capacity developing pitches and proposals and he thinks that because his wife left him I'm supposed to be caught up in his drama?
This is how it is to take a meeting in my industry.
July 16, 2023
Are you living a good life? Are you pretty happy with the way things are? Because clearly, some of you are and some of you aren't. What's the difference? Your thoughts are the difference. How you think about yourself; What you think about your life and its direction. If you examine your answers, through them you might just come to understand what the hell is going on.
July 17, 2023
I see you. Obviously, I can hear you.
Those ears! Adorbs.
July 18, 2023
Overheard 3 teen boys at the water park.  
-- Hardly any hot chicks here today.
-- Lots of families.
-- Nothing good to look at.
-- Wrong boys. 3 o'clock.
-- Who?
-- Her.
-- Her?
-- She's old enough to be your mother.
-- She's certainly someone's mother.
-- Why her?
-- She's not even that hot.
-- What's wrong with you, man?
-- Yeah, why her?
-- 'Cause she's got two kids and no wedding ring. Who knows how long it's been? That's why her.
-- You sly bastard!
-- How does he think like that?
-- Must be one of those idiot savants.
-- You weenies are just looking for hot babes who are way out of your league, when average looking women in dire circumstances are everywhere around you.
-- That's deep.
-- Look, both kids are in the water. She's all alone. Now's the time. See you losers later.
-- Could you do that? I couldn't do that.
-- I was just thinking, what if that's my mom?
-- Ew.
-- Yeah.
July 19, 2023
It's pretty simple really. There are two kinds of people in this world: those who think like me and those who don't. What?
July 20, 2023
-- What are you doing for Marsha's birthday?
-- I'm taking her to a sex club.
-- What?! She'll never go.
-- She doesn't know that's where we're going.
-- Why are you taking your super conservative wife to a sex club on her birthday?
-- I want to open her eyes. The truth is, we don't do it very often because she thinks she's unattractive after the kids. But I don't think that, so I want to adjust her attitude by shocking her with the very thing she avoids.  
-- Sounds like a risk to me.
-- We'll see.
For her 40th birthday, he took her to a sex club. Indeed, she was shocked, unhappy and turned on. Initially it bothered her that she was getting excited by that which she wholly disapproved of. But after a couple of drinks and getting hit on by a couple of men, she started to enjoy herself. Nothing happened that evening except her loosening ideas toward sex which was what her husband intended all along.
-- So, how did it go?
-- About as well as could be expected.
-- Did she like the club?
-- Not really. But we had fun being there.
-- So you're saying this was a successful strategy for an inhibited wife?
-- I would say so, yes.
-- You got balls, Charlie.
-- Thank you, Wilfred. And now I'll be able to use them a little more frequently.
July 21, 2023
His father died and he inherited his father's company. But he was young and now that he had disposable income, all he wanted to do was play, not be a company CEO. So he did. But without guidance, the brand slipped into irrelevance. The Board dithered too long waiting for the son to return and eventually voted him out, but it was too late. The company had floundered, its share price tanked and insolvency was near. Turns out all the son's inherited money was in company stock and by not being there, he was now neither a CEO nor rich. Alanis, that's irony.
July 22, 2023
She went to her ex-boyfriend's gallery opening, looked around and declared, "I could do better than this dreck." So she bought an easel and a beret and called herself an artist. Her technique was brutal. She handled the paintbrush like a club. She beat the canvas into submission. She made a bunch of "paintings" and then had a one woman show in the Beakman Mall between Footlocker and Uncle Sandy's House of Scottish Treats. The reviews were awful. Sandy tried to citizen's arrest her for assaulting the public senses and when that didn't work, he called her ancient names in Gaelic. But she was Gen Z, had a short attention span and was ready to move on from her "art". Besides, she now had a new focus - bringing Uncle Sandy to his knees - no one slurs baby in Gaelic! Yikes.
July 23, 2023
Roses are red
Violets are blue
Cats come in every color
Dogs too
Flowers, pets, no racism there. So how come humans of different colors...
July 25, 2023
I had to call our bank for some information. It was really just a quick question about an account. But the phone verification process was lengthy and took 15 minutes until they were finally convinced that I was who I said I was. I'm sure that many have complained about the time it took to verify, but you know what? Good on the bank. I'm glad they took as long as they did and asked as many questions as they did. If it helps separate phishers from my money, I'm all for it.
July 26, 2023
It's pretty clear that as a writer, AI will replace us. As nascent as the tech is now, just imagine years ahead when it can emulate any writer anywhere and will do so for free. All of us in the arts will suffer from machine learning and exposition. In human-made art there is always a story behind the creation, something fostering the impetus to create it and an understanding for both the audience and the creator that comes out of that finished work. But machines have no back story. Their imaginings are hollow and false and not imbued with the humanity that makes us cry and laugh and identify with the situation. In other words, AI is dry. Underneath all its emulation capacities, it seems the real worry is not its lack of personality, but that it could somehow become sentient. Are we really ready for Daleks?
July 27, 2023
Overheard two blokes on the street.
-- You just don't get it, do you?
-- Get what?
-- See! That's what I'm talking about.
-- See what?
-- What I'm talking about!
-- What are you talking about?
-- You! And the fact that you don't get it!
-- So explain it to me. And quit yelling.
-- Look, you either get it or you don't.
-- Well I don't.
-- That's what I've been saying.
-- Then why didn't you just say that?
-- I did!
-- No you didn't. I was right here.
-- Do you do this shit on purpose?
-- Do what?
-- Act like you don't know what I'm talking about until my blood pressure rises and my inability to get through to you almost causes me a heart attack and a migraine.
-- You just don't get it, do you?
-- Get what?
-- See! That's what I'm talking about - shoe on the other foot now buddy...
July 28, 2023
Dear Keith,
I am going crazy. My family is driving me crazy. My parents are insane and my siblings are lunatics. I am the only normal one. We're like the Munsters only not funny. It's pathetic. After meeting my family, my friends started calling me Marilyn, as in Marilyn Munster, the normal one. But my name is Kathy! I don't like being called Marilyn! How do I make them stop?
Kathy, the normal one
Dear Kathy,
I don't get it. Is your problem with your crazy family or your cheeky friends? Fortunately for you, there is a common solution for both. If it's your family, every time they act up, you might taser them, just a little, just to get your point across. Now, as for your friends, every time they call you Marilyn, well, you could taser them too. Trust me, they will all soon stop bothering you. There, hope I helped!
July 29, 2023
You don't have to listen to yourself, but why wouldn't you?
July 30, 2023
She was 8 years old when her parents asked her what she was going to do with her life. She said that she was dedicating her time on Earth to animal welfare because people were cruel, thoughtless and a danger to all living things on this planet. She spoke unkindly about religion, war and political ignorance. She said it was the animals who continuously suffer in man's strife against man. She said this has to stop. Her parents, somewhat shell shocked, nodded like that was totally normal and never again asked her what she wanted to do with her life.
July 31, 2023
I'm looking out my office window watching a baby bunny nibble on a green apple in our yard. It is the definition of cute. Especially for a Monday.

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