Ch 10 – The Rock

Pictured above: Yep, that’s me, with my iPhone, having just purchased a Jet Ski to aid in my escape from my personal Alcatraz.

When the federal prison on Alcatraz Island last housed the likes of Al Capone, George “Machine-Gun” Kelly, and Alvin “Creepy” Karpis (the first “Public Enemy #1”), it was said that escape from The Rock was impossible. Only a few gave it a try.

Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.  – Les Brown
Most of us never attempt a prison break from our own personal Alcatraz. Fear, real or imagined, keeps us from doing so.

I have not penned the Great American Novel, nor have my scripts been made into movies, or even optioned by the studios. “The Oscar for Best Original Screenplay goes to…” Not me. I will likely never hear my name announced at the Academy Awards. Do you think that matters to me? FUCK YEAH, it does.

There are over 50,000 writers in the Los Angeles area alone with a slim to none chance of making it in this business. I understand those odds. So I have replaced my dream with a fantasy. My acceptance speech for winning the Oscar for the Best Original Screenplay is tucked neatly into my back pocket.

The trick is to make one’s fantasy life a real possibility.

Because if I ever do give that speech, I will need to thank the most important person of all. The one who dared to dream. More importantly, he set realistic goals and fearlessly pursued them. Devoting the remainder of his life trying to spin reality from the yarn of fantasy.

Fourteen attempts were made to escape from Alcatraz in 29 years. On one such attempt in 1962 two men – John and Clarence Anglin – were never found and presumed drowned in the San Fransisco Bay. The FBI said they never reached shore. Others say they survived the frigid waters in a makeshift inflatable raft made of raincoats.


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