Rug Surfing increases Endurance

How many times have you had the rug pulled out from under you?  For me, it’s been a fact of life.

Here are a few of my harshest career examples:

 

1.     During the early 90’s Jean Claude Van Damme was one of the biggest action stars.  DRAMA-LOGUE (a weekly casting paper for the film industry) posted an ad for a co-starring role in Van Damme’s film THE QUEST, so I (not my agent) sent a headshot and resume hoping to get an audition.

 

A few weeks passed and my agent notified me that they wanted me to audition for the part.  I arrived, did a videotaped cold reading, and thought it went very well.

 

A few weeks pass and I receive a call from my agent on a Thursday evening. “Are you ready to leave for Thailand for 6 months?” he asked. “You leave tomorrow.” I could only respond with, “what?”  He went on to ask if production called me two weeks ago to get everything in line (shots, passport, & contracts).  They didn’t.  It was his job to do coordinate with production and he didn’t do it.  I was devastated.

 

They went with another actor and I fired my agent immediately.  Consequently I discovered he lost his Screen Actors Guild agent signatory a few months later.

 

2.     I was offered a co-starring role on an episode of XENA WARRIOR PRINCESS only to lose it at the last second because they wanted someone taller.

 

3.     During a television production filming in Mexico I was offered an acting position that would last 6 month (a LOT of money), only to be told at the last minute I would not be going.  I was later offered to go again but was canceled the day before I was to leave.  Eventually I was thrown a bone with 2 weeks of work.  Although I was grateful it was very hard to deal with.

 

4.     Just this week I was offered a week’s worth of work on a major film only to be notified this morning that it has been canceled.  This wouldn’t be so difficult but I’ve been out of work in the film industry for a month.  Situations like this are all too common anymore due to pending strikes or runaway productions (films that are schedule to film in the US only to pack up and move to non-US locations) or worse yet, people bad mouthing me in order to further their career.  It happens in every business.

The above is only the tip of the iceberg and you’ll have to wait for the book for the rest.

I’m sure many of you are thinking “you need to use THE SECRET”.   Although it is an inspiring book and movie, sometimes you’ve got to keep your feet on the ground and face the situation you’re in.   Wishful thinking won’t solve the problem of no income no matter much I say, “I receive unexpected checks in the mail.”

Some of you are asking, “Why are you even in the film business?”  Well, there is no business like it, none that I know anyway.

Aside from the many rugs pulled out from under me, there have been a few “magic carpets” like landing co-starring roles in:  The CW network’s ALIENS IN AMERICA pilot episode (now canceled ,  FROM DUSK TIL DAWN 3 (where I spent 2 months in BEAUTIFUL South Africa, worked with some great people, and got to hang out with models), plus appearing with Rob Zombie in his videos, photo shoots, and film HOUSE OF 1,000 CORPSES; and meeting some great people and experiencing the American Indian culture in Santa Fe, New Mexico during filming of THE GHOSTS OF MARS.  Working alongside: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Ozzy Osbourne, Pam Grier, Jason Statham, Woody Harrelson, James Caan, John Carpenter, and many others are amazing.  These times make the low points forgettable.

How does this all tie into the Grab-it Pack®?

Primarily dealing with people who bad mouth the product just by looking at the website, retail stores who won’t return calls or meet with me, trying to get exposure for my product from media outlets who won’t give you the time of day without a publicist, and in general starting a business and dealing with all the “red tape”.

You would be surprised how many emails I get from people wanting a free sample or wholesale prices WITHOUT having a business or plans on reviewing it.  I even had a French blogger return my product destroyed because I asked for the free sample back if he wasn’t going to review it.  Recently there have been some forums where people bash the hell out of me (some people REALLY need to get a life) and some jerks even mock the charity Operation Mend where I donate a portion of my sales.   I’d be a liar if I said it didn’t bother me but I’ve dealt with worse throughout my career.  These arm chair quarter-backs are no match for some of the sharks I’ve had to deal with in the film business but as PT Barnum said, “there’s no such thing as bad publicity.”

What makes me keep on going?

I have the best friends and customers anyone could ask for.  I’ve had nothing but pure honesty from my customers and bloggers (who have actually USED the Grab-it Pack ®, all the blogs making fun of it NEVER purchased one OR received a sample).

You have no idea how great it feels when someone loves something I’ve made or I receive a sale due to word of mouth.  The gratification is instant and nothing could be more appreciative to a business. 

Even though I am not at the level of retiring from the film industry, selling a product I believe in and that my CUSTOMERS LOVE makes it all worthwhile.

 

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Comments

  • 8/22/2008 9:16 PM Richard Waguespack wrote:
    Having read your blog entries and seeing the unkind comments others have made about your product disappoints me.

    If those people do not like the Grab-It Pack all they have to say is “It is not for me” or something along those lines.

    Making negative and non-constructive comments gets everybody nowhere.

    I do not own a Grab-It Pack at this moment, although I do plan on getting one in the near future.

    Ingenuity, inventiveness, and the opportunity to implement ideas are some of the things that have made the USA the awesome place that it is.

    Keep the faith. You are following the path blazed by many successful inventors before you.
    Reply to this
  • 12/29/2008 8:25 PM Sam Costanza wrote:
    Louis,

    It's a far more stylish, comfortable, and most importantly, UTILITARIAN answer to the much-hated man-purse, messenger bag, or butt-pack. I have toted 2 of the above 3, and can tell you from experience, the messenger bag is a pain, and the constant flopping of the butt-pack is downright uncomfortable. Especially if you are carrying a .45 in it!

    This is on my to-order list for this year. Ignore the negative people, and keep going! One place you might want to advertise it is on Speed Channel's motorcycle shows. Seems this is purpose-designed for bike riders.
    Reply to this
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