rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

Between a rock and an art place

Please chip in to support rabble's election 2019 coverage. Support rabble.ca today for as little as $1 per month!

I have been struggling with this blog post for two weeks, writing bits and pieces of three different articles, leaving all of them half-finished in the unbelievable blizzard of crazy activity that is my life at the moment. However, when I finally got the opportunity to sit down and concentrate... nothing. Minutes flow by. Still nothing. I squeeze my brain like a tube of toothpaste, and when nothing comes out, I decide to flip through some unread business-related email.

In my voiceover email pile are some tips from the great Bob Bergen, one of which is, “Never audition to please. The only one to please at an audition is you. You have to take the pressure out of being liked and just love the journey.” Although I myself have given similar advice both to myself and others about stage acting auditions, it is still something I need to remember in other circumstances, like VO auditions AND... like writing.

Everyone's Talking

Suddenly it occurs to me that I cannot seem to finish these articles because I am trying to please a formula or a hot tagged item, rather than writing what resonates for my readers -- artists, educators, and community organizers like myself.

Yes, we all have guidelines we need to follow and yes, we all must create work with and towards a specific purpose in a process that includes multiple stakeholders and visions. BUT we will be most efficient, compelling, and happy when we do so by going with our own flow or 'starting from where we are, rather than where we wish we were' as a wise friend used to say. Personally, I often get caught up in trying to fit into 'what I am supposed to do' without remembering that I myself am one of the stakeholders, and I sometimes forget that happiness in fulfilling a requirement is a good thing to strive for.

holly smilesMy tip for this week is this: Take a look at what you have to do (your 'should' list), and see if you can put yourself/your current actual state of mind or emotion, your immediate delights, passions, or perspectives back into the equation. The most important stakeholder whose needs must be met is the person actually carrying out the task... and that person is you. It's not selfish to make sure your needs are part of the equation -- it's what makes the work sustainable.

Keep on Rockin', you awesome movers and shakers...


Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.