Charlie's Creative Comedy presents

Thought For The Week

Issue #500 
October 29, 2012

By Bruce "Charlie" Johnson


This is issue number 500 of this newsletter. The first issue was posted on my web site on May 2, 2001. I would never have imagined that I would create this many issues. What is even more amazing to me is that some of my original subscribers have stuck with me all this time. Some of them were subscribers to The Clown In Times, my quarterly journal devoted to clown history, that I published during the six years prior to starting my newsletter. I appreciate their loyalty over the years. I wouldn't have continued without their support and encouragement.


 I'll see you down the road,



In This Issue
Thought For The Week
Sandy Relief
Educational Opportunities

Thought For The Week 

October 29, 2012

By Bruce "Charlie" Johnson


"The only way to get positive feelings about yourself is to take positive actions. Man does not live as he thinks, he thinks as he lives." -- Vaughan Quinn


In my Creativity for Entertainers trilogy I talk about the self-fulfilling nature of creativity. Those who think they are creative act as if they are creative, which makes them creative. Those who think they aren't creative don't try to be creative so they are never creative. But how do you begin to think that you are creative? You do it by doing something creative. Don't set yourself up for failure by trying to do something too grand. Start with something small that you feel is creative. That might be changing the appearance of a prop by redecorating it. It could be writing a new Knock-knock joke. Solving a brain teaser puzzle is creative. Substituting one ingredient for another in a recipe is also creative. It can be figuring out how to repair something around your house. It can be playing a theatrical improvisation game. Most books on creativity, including those I wrote, include exercises that help you experience your own ability to be creative. Don't wait for inspiration to strike. Choose a creative task and accomplish it. Use that as proof that you are creative and tackle another creative task. By acting as if you are creative you will come to think of yourself as being creative. That growing confidence will allow you to attempt increasingly more difficult creative projects.


The same principle applies to other aspects of life and being an entertainer. For me keeping my office neat and organized is a challenge. I am much more interested in starting the next project than I am in clearing things away from the last project. I don't consider spending time organizing and cleaning much fun. I could just give up and say that is the way that I am. However, I have been focusing on doing some small project each day to get reorganized. I force myself to do something even if I don't feel like it. I have been sorting through and discarding things that are no longer of use so I have more room to organize those things that I will use. I keep reminding myself that by doing this I will be able to work smarter instead of harder. Slowly as I see the results I feel good about what I am doing. By acting as if I am more organized I am beginning to feel like a person who is organized. That makes the next step easier to begin and accomplish.


I have just qualified for the ScoutStrong President's Active Lifestyle Award™. It is a joint effort by the Obama Administration and Boy Scouts of America to promote a more healthy lifestyle. It required that I be physically active at least thirty minutes a day for five days each week during a six week period. In addition each week I had to set a nutritional goal. For example, the first week I started drinking more water and less flavored beverages. I continued that the second week, and started to eat fish at least once a week. I never considered myself much of an athlete and didn't follow a regular exercise plan. It was easy to use the frequent rain showers in Seattle as an excuse for staying inside. However, after being active for six weeks I find that I miss physical activity if I have to skip it very many days in a row. For the first time in my life I have started using a stationary bicycle on days when I can't be active outside. It is boring, but I find listening to my collection of old time radio programs while I pedal away helps me stay motivated. The old radio programs were a half-hour and that is the length of my exercise program. I have lost some weight and enjoy knowing that I am improving my fitness. I know that this increased physical conditioning will help me as an entertainer by providing the stamina needed for performances.  I feel good about myself.


What specific positive feelings would you like to have about yourself? If you felt that way, how would you act? What actions can you take now that will result in your thinking in that way?


Sandy Relief



I have watched with amazement the scenes of destruction from Superstorm Sandy. Twenty years ago, September 1992, I was in Seaside Heights, NJ teaching and performing at Clownfest. I did a show on one of their piers, which has been destroyed by this storm. I know that many of my subscribers have attended that educational program.


Last year I attended the 2011 World Clown Association Convention in New York. As part of the convention I toured the city and saw areas that were flooded this year.


I have many friends who live in the areas impacted by this storm. My thoughts and prayers are with each of them.


They need our help. The best way to have the greatest immediate effect is to make a cash donation to an organization like the American Red Cross. Don't be misled by Mitt Romney's staged relief photo opportunity at one of his campaign events. Relief agencies don't want you to donate food and other items at a remote site. The cost of shipping them to where they are needed diverts funds from more vital aid efforts. (If you are supporting a local organization like a homeless shelter or food bank, then donations of food, clothing, and other supplies is definitely appropriate and appreciated.) Relief agencies prefer that you make a cash donation which is easily transferable and can be used most efficiently by purchasing the most desperately needed supplies close to the affected area.


I performed some fundraising shows after some previous disasters. I didn't charge for my entertainment, but those attending made a donation to the Red Cross when they arrived. For transparency and accountability I did not handle any of the money myself. Somebody else accepted the donations, counted them, and delivered them to the Red Cross. Such a performance encourages others to make a donation and gives the local Red Cross a chance to promote their programs. It also creates a sense of community and relieves stress. Studies have shown that people who watch extended television disaster coverage can experience many of the same symptoms caused by stress as those more directly affected by the event. Their symptoms are not as severe, but are real. I don't have any definite plans yet, but hope to do something to raise funds for the victims of Superstorm Sandy.


If you would like to make a donation through the American Red Cross to aid the victims of Sandy, go to



Thank you for being a subscriber.  I am always interested in your questions and comments.

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I hope to see you down the road.


Bruce Johnson
Charlie's Creative Comedy
Copyright 2012 by Bruce "Charlie" Johnson.
All rights reserved. 
Educational Opportunities

I believe in promoting any event I will be lecturing at.  If you schedule me for an educational event that you are hosting, I will list it here.  My goal is to do what I can to best meet the needs of you and your group.
World Clown
Association Convention Borneo
 February 25 - March 1, 2013


Jest Because, The Life of a Circus Clown


WCA Convention


All Things Clowning

April 19-21

Fayetteville, Georgia

Classes to be announced 



For information on additional services that I can provide for an educational event 

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