Things I did in Miami: Went to DBSA Conference, went to Beach and went to the Zoo, etc., etc. Quite a laundry list of things…My family and I did while on stay-cation (a vacation close to home).
The DBSA pre Conference starts out with a bang Friday. With an estimated 150 or more chapter leaders at the Hilton Miami Downtown hotel. Allen Doederlein and Lucinda Jewell started off the day with reviewing the success of the DBSA has made over the past few years and what the future holds.
For me, Chato Stewart and Joan Winifred and family, we were able to have two tables set up to do something that has NEVER been done at any of the past 27 years in the DBSA conference history. No, it was not having me set up to draw caricatures of the guests and peers at the conference…but you would be close. Rather it was having 3 young girls ages 8,10 and 12 draw caricatures of the attendees. Yes, Chato’s girls were drawing their little fannies off. Every one they drew were happy and full of joy when they got their drawings.
Here are a few DBSA conference goers that had the girls draw them…
What a fast pace month May was, with the cartoon-a-thon for Mental Health Heroes and this month the 2013 DBSA conference where I’ve been asked to draw more caricatures… And I’ve been invited to a very special event, too. More about that later. Right now, I’m getting ready for the DBSA Comedy night. It will be my 3rd time doing the Stand-Up for Mental Health show and this year I’m testing out new materiel. Although I write and draw cartoons daily, it’s nothing like stand-up comedy.
To get me ready for going on stage, I thought I would ask an old high school buddy for some tips. I went to school with Dave Russo, winner of the Boston Comedy Festival and featured on “Comics Come Home with Denis Leary,” runner up on the E! TV series “The Entertainer” with Wayne Newton, USO shows nationwide, and can be seen weekly as co-host of NESN’s “Dirty Water TV.” So I thought I would reach out to Dave Russo since he knows a thing or two about stand-up and to get some good comedy gold tips.
“Dave, I’m about to start writing jokes for my 3rd attempt at stand-up for Stand Up For Mental Health program. I’ll be at the Depression Bipolar Support Alliance conference… Do you have advice you could share with me?”
He gave me the best advice:
“Who are you and how the (#@%&) did you get my personal number?”
It took some explaining who I was and eventually he started to believe he remembered me or he just wanted me to stop calling him every morning at 3:AM… He did give me this good advice:
“Who ever YOU ARE off stage WITH your friends and family is the same person YOU should BE on stage. Talk about what YOU know and who YOU ARE. Take your time smile & be confident! Display confidence & 1 st impressions are very IMPORTANT.
I tried calling him at 4:AM this morning to thank …
Shana Koehler 2013 Mental Health Hero Cartoon-A-Thon
Drawing by Chato Stewart
About myself…I love to read!! I also love to color. I find coloring helps me with anxiety. Reading usually takes me away from the world once I can concentrate enough on a book to get lost in it. (ADD & mind racing)