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Archive for the ‘Quotes’ Category

Isaac Asimov – Quoted

Where in the world am I today?: Winnipeg Flying home to Vancouver!

“The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not ‘Eureka!’ (I found it!) but ‘That’s funny …'”

Isaac Asimov, US science fiction novelist & scholar (1920 – 1992)


“Some of my fondest memories of performing have come from the unexpected tangents produced when something unexpected comes along.”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

I learn far more from those shows that don’t go as expected than those that do. The gold that can be mined both in Science as suggested by Asimov and in comedy as suggested by me is to have a well developed curiosity and enough confidence in not letting the unexpected throw you, but rather to allow the unexpected to open the door to a brand new world of possibility.

Winnie the Pooh – Quoted

Where in the world am I today?: Winnipeg, MB, Canada

You can’t stay in your corner of the Forest waiting for others to come to you. You have to go to them sometimes.

Winnie the Pooh Fictional Bear Created by A.A. Milne (1926 – )


“Success in relationships often means not just meeting in the middle, but going beyond that point. Make a little extra effort, and you’ll be amazed at the results”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

Seeing as I’m in Winnipeg at the moment I wanted to have a quote up by Pooh Bear because the inspiration for the name Winnie came from Winnipeg. I pulled the following directly off of Wikipedia

A.A. Milne named the character Winnie-the-Pooh after a teddy bear owned by his son, Christopher Robin Milne, who was the basis for the character Christopher Robin. Christopher Milne had named his toy bear after Winnie, an American black bear which he often saw at London Zoo. The bear cub was purchased from a hunter for $20 by Canadian Lieutenant Harry Colebourn in White River, Ontario, Canada, while en route to England during the First World War. He named the bear “Winnie” after his hometown in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Beyond just wanting a quote that was somehow tied to Winnipeg, I thought this one was particularly appropriate for my time in Winnipeg because the crew that gather’s for C.A.M.P. all make an extra effort to connect with the ‘Youth at Risk’ we’re here to teach. It’s a great program and one I’ve been proud to have been a part of every year since it started back in 1997.

Sir Arthur Eddington – Quoted

Where in the world am I today?: Yellowknife, NWT, Canada

“We are bits of stellar matter that got cold by accident, bits of a star gone wrong.”

Sir Arthur Eddington, English astronomer (1882 – 1944)


“The stellar matter in Yellowknife seems to have got significantly colder than say the stellar matter in Hawaii.”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

At -21˚C my show at noon today in a ‘semi-heated’ outdoor tent at Caribou Carnival is likely the lowest temperature I’ve ever performed at. I swear I thought I was going to be doing indoor shows when I took this gig, but in my experience being able to pull off a show when the conditions are a bit challenging endears you that much more to your audience. The muffled sound of glove wrapped hands applauding my silliness today was music to my ears.

Carl Sagan – Quoted

Where in the world am I today?: North Vancouver, BC, Canada

“If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe.”

Carl Sagan, US astronomer & popularizer of astronomy (1934 – 1996)


“It’s not an apple pie, but the iPhone I just bought feels like the start of a brand new universe…”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

I’ve been ummming and ahhhhing about getting an iPhone for a couple of years and even posted about the temptation and seductive allure of this little electronics beast earlier in the week… It hasn’t even been twenty-four hours since I took ownership of this device and already I can really understand what my friend Jeremy Eaton said when he called it the ‘Face Eating Monster.’ Another friend told me that it would change my life… I’d be able to do more all the time and I’m sure he’s right… Not sure it’s a good thing, but I sure am having fun! It’s like that new-ness of a fresh relationship when you’re all on pins and needles… It’s awesome! Wonder how long the romance will last?

Pierre Trudeau – Quoted

Where in the world am I today?: North Vancouver, BC, Canada

“Canada is a country whose main exports are hockey players and cold fronts.”

Pierre Trudeau, Canadian politician (1919 – 2000)


“Make that Gold-Medal-Winning Hockey Players!!!”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

OK, so I sort of cheated on this one… Normally quotes go up on Saturday and this post is back-dated so that it looks as though it was posted on Saturday, but truth be told I waited until after the Men’s Gold Medal Hockey Game to find the quote, and throw it up… What a great way for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games to wrap up! Awesome Hockey! Yippee!

George F. Will – Quoted

Where in the world am I today?: North Vancouver, BC, Canada

“Sports serve society by providing vivid examples of excellence.”

George F. Will, US editor, commentator, & columnist (1941 – )


“The 2010 Winter Games not only provides a venue for sports excellence, but also amazing crowds in good spirits to play to as a performer!”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

Wanted to have a quote that I could tie in to the Olympics and found this one… The Olympics certainly has transformed Vancouver. I discussed it a bit a couple of days ago, but it really is amazing to walk down town and feel the excitement in the air! The enthusiasm and spirit that’s floating around is just incredible and it’s a joy to be in the middle of it all! If you can get yourself here before the end of the Game you’ll see what I mean. If not, enjoy the buzz on TV or however else you can!

John Howard Payne – Quoted

Where in the world am I today?: New Delhi, India.

“Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam,

Be it ever so humble, there’s no place like home.”

John Howard Payne , US actor & dramatist (1791 – 1852)


“Striking a happy balance between loving life on the road and the simple pleasures of home and family is one of the greatest challenges I’m never sure I get right.”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

I think the first weeks of 2010 have been a bit out of whack… On the road way more than I’ve been home, but I’m heading home tonight and am very much looking forward to sleeping in my bed for a few weeks while I plug away at a contract during the Olympics.

Mahatma Gandhi – Quoted

Where in the world am I today?: Mumbai, India.

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”

Mahatma Gandhi, Indian political and spiritual leader (1869 – 1948)


Eating Crow and admitting fault is the first step in receiving forgiveness from others”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

A quote from Gandhi seemed appropriate on all sorts of levels today. I arrived 24 hours late into India because of a HUGE BRAIN FART. I misread the flight details for February 3rd and showed up at airport expecting to board a 2:00 pm flight which had actually left at 2:00 am. I scrambled to rebook the flight and get myself to India in time to start the gig and succeeded in doing so and shows today went really well – Phew! Thankfully my employer from the Canadian Tourism Commission took it all in stride and all it cost me in penance to receive his forgiveness was several rounds of drink when I got to town. It could have been worse!

Yoda – Quoted

2010-01-301Where in the world am I today?: North Vancouver, BC, Canada

“Do or do not. There is no try.”

Yoda, Jedi Council Leader
(as quoted from The Empire Strikes Back, Released May 21, 1980)


“Good Actors don’t ‘act’ they ‘are’ their part. Good performers don’t ‘try to perform’ entertainment exudes from every fibre of their being as soon as they step on stage!”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

If you go on stage and try to perform instead of being a performer the audience will call you on it every single time. The degree of the humiliation will vary in degree depending on the venue. At best they’ll be restless in their seats, at worst they simply walk away… I love Street Performing for this very reason, because people vote with their feet and you get pretty immediate feedback as to the calibre of your performance based simply on your ability to build and hold a crowd.

André Gide – Quoted

2010-01-23Where in the world am I today?: At Sea aboard the Emerald Princess

“Art is a collaboration between God and the artist, and the less the artist does the better.”

André Gide, French critic, essayist, & novelist (1869 – 1951)


“I like those moments in my show when the gods of comedy come and give me a little gift… At such times the best thing I can often do is sit back and enjoy the moment with the audience.”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

We’ve all had those moments during the course of a performance when something unexpected happens that make the moment hugely more entertaining than anything you could have ‘planned.’ I like referring to these as gifts from the comedy gods. Those prevaors of frivolity who occasionally bless a performer with an extra ounce of humour to send the audience into hysterics. In moment’s such as these do everyone a favour and don’t get in the way of the funny!

Albert Camus – Quoted

2010-01-16Where in the world am I today?: North Vancouver, BC, Canada

“Charm is a way of getting the answer yes without asking a clear question.”

Albert Camus, French existentialist author & philosopher (1913 – 1960)


“The ability to convince people that it was their idea to do what you want them to do for you is an incredibly powerful tool…the squeaky wheel may get the grease, but if you can get the grease with out being squeaky, so much the better”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

Charm when combined with grace can weave an incredible tapestry of opportunity. Understanding he subtle idiosyncrasies of human communication and working them to your advantage take practice and a great deal of skill, but if mastered, this skill will take you further in life than any university degree ever would.

Johnny Carson – Quoted

2010-01-09Where in the world am I today?: At Sea aboard the EMERALD Princess.

“Never continue in a job you don’t enjoy. If you’re happy in what you’re doing, you’ll like yourself, you’ll have inner peace. And if you have that, along with physical health, you will have had more success than you could possibly have imagined.”

Johnny Carson, US comedian & television host (1925 – 2005)


“People sometimes still ask me what I want to be when I grow up and I always answer the same thing – Happy. Remain happy and life’s journey will give you more rewards than money alone.”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

When I went to find the quote today I searched for Johnny Carson… Not sure exactly why, but it just seemed like there’d be a gem of his worth posting, perhaps some comedy gold, perhaps some nugget of wisdom worth imparting… This one seemed to fall under the nugget of wisdom category… When I was performing as a teenager people asked when I was going to grow up and get a real job? Now in my forties people ask me how much longer I pan on doing what I do for a living. Truth is, I still love it. I still get a charge out of walking out on stage and imagine I always will. When will I give up being a performer? Hopefully never. As long as the physical health component stays in place I plan on sticking with this gig for many many years to come – it’s just too much FUN!

Oscar Wilde – Quoted

2010-01-02Where in the world am I today?: Port Canaveral to Orlando to Minneapolis to Vancouver and home…

“Good resolutions are simply checks that men draw on a bank where they have no account.”

Oscar Wilde, Irish dramatist, novelist, & poet (1854 – 1900)


“New Years indeed seems to take out a mortgage at such a bank!”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

So here’s to good intentions! Wilde suggests that it’s easy to decide to do something if you’ve got nothing at stake when it comes time to pay the bill… This blog is and example one resolution that I kept as I went into 2009, but I’m well aware of so many more over the years that I haven’t… As we look down the barrel at a brand new year, here’s hoping you selected any resolutions wisely and that you’re actually able to stick with them…

Frank Bruno – Quoted

2009-12-26Where in the world am I today?: North Vancouver, BC, Canada

Boxing is just show business with blood.

Frank Bruno, Former English Heavy-Weight Boxer (1961 – )


“Show-business is just like Boxing, just be careful who you step into the ring with!”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

Not sure that actually makes sense, but I think the point I was trying to make was the fact that in this business that we call ‘show’ it can sometimes feel like a fight… On the street level it can be the fight for getting the pitch, in the cruise ship market, the fight to actually have your promo watched by the powers that be, if you’re hugely successful then perhaps it becomes the fight to keep your privacy… Pick your battles carefully and when ever possible use your powers for good! Happy Boxing Day!

Dale Carnegie – Quoted

2009-12-19Where in the world am I today?: At Sea aboard the GRAND Princess.

“The man who goes farthest is generally the one who is willing to do and dare. The sure-thing boat never gets far from shore.”

Dale Carnegie, American writer and lecturer (1888 – 1955)


“In this industry, the sure-thing boat often takes the guise of a cruise ship, and I have to admit that though this market is seductive I know bigger things are possible to those who apply themselves.”

–David ‘checkerhead’ Aiken

I love working on ships. I’ve written a ton of posts on this blog about the cruise ship market and what’s involved, but I’m 100% sure that although there’s a lot to be said for the regular work and the interesting life that can be enjoyed while working in this particular market, there is more…far more in the way of opportunity and possibility for those who are willing to build a different dream. It’s a bigger risk for sure, but the pay-offs if successful are also far greater!

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