Nov 29, 2011

Life Plan #682

Like most other plans in this non-existent series, this one has been floating around in seriousness for only a few weeks or so and is subject to change. Allow me to talk it out, though.

We are planning on moving to Chicago in a year. A year give or take a few months, because this would be a terrible time of year to move.

Why move?

As you know, my darling and hilarious husband is pursuing a career in comedy. Because we're still young and starry-eyed and unattached enough to shoot for it. And he needs to make people laugh and I need to go to a ton of free comedy shows because I'm with him.

In order to take this thing seriously, though, at some point we need to get out of Utah. It's not exactly a state that's in good touch with the entertainment industry. Short of starring in a Halestorm Entertainment LDS comedy feature (are they even still doing those? I can't think of anything since Church Ball...), Trevor's already about as Utah Comedy Famous as you can be. He's in ComedySportz and has done stand-up at Wiseguys and The Complex...what else is there for this state?

As improv and sketch are Trevor's main comedy loves (stand-up is a distant 3rd), the best next step is going to be to study at one of the big improv schools (Second City, iO, UCB or Groundlings). This leaves us with four options of places to move to: New York, Los Angeles, Toronto, and Chicago.

Why Chicago?

Toronto won't work because it's in Canada and that just makes moving more complicated. Also, it's scarier because it's the one option I haven't been to before, which is enough to cause me to never give it serious consideration. (Trevor has never been to any of the four cities, but he doesn't matter, he's just the talent. What really matters is what I, the logistics person, feel comfortable with. Also, the ComedySportz International Competition for 2012 is in Chicago, so at least he will have been there once by the time we get there?)

Los Angeles has the best weather and the most TV/film opportunities, so there was definitely some debate about moving there, but cost of living, lack of good public transportation, and the general superficial vibe ultimately ruled the city out. Public transportation is definitely necessary for Trevor to get to/from classes/auditions/performances without relying on me. Also, the Second City location in Hollywood isn't wheelchair accessible. Groundlings would probably be the first choice improv school in LA anyway, but yeah, I just wanted to say how lame that is.

New York is the most expensive and doesn't have the best options for improv schools (it's more of a stand-up-centered town, comedy-wise).

Probably the biggest factor is cost of living. Statistically speaking, Chicago means only a 13% cost of living increase for us, which is more easily done than the 35% for Toronto, 43% for Los Angeles, or 55% for New York.

So yes, Chicago. And if we're going to Chicago, we better get Trevor enrolled with the mecca of improvisational comedy, Second City. The list of ComedySportz alumni that you've head of is pretty small (Jason Sudekis, Dan Harmon, Nick Swardson...uhh, there are probably others, but no way there are more than like, five). Second City is a much more established outfit and far more likely to get industry recognition for their performers. The list of Second City Chicago alumni that you've heard of is insanely impressive (Dan Aykroyd, Steve Carell, Chris Farley, Tina Fey, Bill Murray, Jane Lynch, Stephen Colbert, John Belushi, Mike Meyers, etc., etc., etc.). Of course, most people who have studied comedy at Second City don't go on to a life of wealth and fame, but it's still definitely a good next step for trying to make a career out of making people laugh.

Why in a year?

The plan is to save up enough money to survive (and pay for Second City classes) for six months in Chicago without employment. Realistically, we won't be able to do that in less than a year.

Hopefully, once we're out there, we'll find employment quickly and most of the saved money will remain saved, but that remains to be seen. The unemployment rate has typically been higher in Chicago than Provo (currently 9.7% vs. 6.8%), so there is some worry about that, but I think six months should be enough time to find something. If we don't find work and just run out of money, we don't deserve life in the city and will run home to family or something. I don't know. I don't want to worry about that yet.

Second City requires a year of progressive improv training before you can audition for their professional-level classes. Trevor will have reached that point with ComedySportz in January, so that'll be no problem. However, we are also in the process of starting a sketch comedy group with a first show planned for January and we'd like to see that project through for at least several months before leaving. (Yes, I'm saying "we" for this one, as I'm doing a little writing and performing myself).

So yeah, that's the plan. As I discover flaws, we'll adjust. Or come up with something completely different. Doesn't hurt to save up to move to Chicago even if we don't, right? But we will. Because I'd hate for you to have wasted sweet minutes of your time reading this post for nothing.

That's right. It's all about you. Just like you thought it was.

Nov 19, 2011


We listen to the radio all day at my work, so I am much more current with pop music than I have typically been.

Songs I Originally Loved But Have Heard So Many Times I Now Hate Them
"Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO
"Someone Like You" - Adele

Songs I Originally Hated But Have Heard So Many Times I Now Love Them
"Tonight Tonight" - Hot Chelle Rae
"Stereo Hearts" - Gym Class Heroes

Songs I Hated From the Get-Go
"Moves Like Jagger" - Maroon 5
"Jet Lag" - Simple Plan

Nov 12, 2011


On Monday, I will turn 25. I think this is the first birthday where I've felt a little bummed about getting older. To me, 25 marks when you're really not a kid anymore. And yes, this means a magical drop in my car rental and insurance rates, but is that really worth the fact that I'll likely never be better-looking than I am at this point in my life? And the fact that it's no longer an appropriate age to have still not committed to any sort of semblance of a life plan?

My parents had college degrees and three kids at 25. My dad was working for the same institution he does now. Their life was pretty much set. I know it's a grass-is-greener thing and people tied to careers and families and mortgages envy the freedom of people like me, but I definitely envy the stability of people who've figured out where they want to be and are putting down roots. And the sense of fulfillment that I imagine comes with working towards something.

Growing up, I always figured I'd do the stereotypical Mormon housewife thing when I was older. It's worked for a lot of women that I admire, but turns out it's not my thing. I didn't admit it to myself at the time, but I definitely lived the sad cliche of going to BYU to get married. That's how you fail out like I did, kids.

So I got married and realized having babies sounds exhausting and expensive and is such a tremendous commitment and here we are. I never really knew what I wanted to be when I grow up. So I'll just grow up and be nothing and then die.

Not that being nothing is all that bad, I suppose. I have a job that I'm okay at and allows us to live comfortably enough. We have a roof over our heads and food in our stomachs and clothes on our backs and still can go out and do fun things on a regular basis. It'd be nice to have a car again and maybe nice to own a house and/or have children and/or go back to school someday, but I'm still young enough to worry about those things later, right? I'm still a kid until at least 26, yes?