Something changed?

Observation: Just an observation here - as I've just returned to vent, I seem to notice that other vents seem less inclined toward responding to others. I remember back in the early '80's, I'd write to many pros, like Willie Tyler, Ronn Lucas, and Shari Lewis, via snail mail and they were always very gracious in writing back and offering bits of advice. However, it just doesn't seem to be the case now - even with the ease of electronic communication. I don't know - perhaps it's just me (maybe it was because I was a child then), but it does seem something has changed. Keith
* * * * * *
Mr. D's comment: In the early 80's there was little (if any, email/Internet). Letters and phone were the top methods of communication. Thus, there were fewer contacts so even the busy pros were more likely to respond. Today communication is so easy and inexpensive it's nothing for me to receive 50 or more emails a day, (sometimes several from the same individual) and I'm retired! The pros must receive 100s - thus it's impossible for a busy working and travelling performer to respond to every daily contact and certainly impossible to respond to more than a few with anything of length. While I certainly would not want to trade today for yesteryear, you have pointed out one of the down sides of a good thing.


  1. Anonymous4/29/2011

    I agree with Keith! This is a sad thing. I know & understand when it comes to busy PROS, but i have a facebook acct for my passion in vent & magic, where i've shared photos of old time performers, articles from old publications regarding our predecessors, etc. & even though i've "liked" or commented on THEIR posts, they never do on mine! It's sad to think that in a time when amatures can access others, & share so much easier, that they seem to have no desire to do so. Just the other day, while on my facebook page i spoke of, i said to myself "I GIVE UP!", & deleted most of my stuff out of pure discust, & will most likely delete it all together, as i obviously see no reason continuing to share when i get no feedback. Here we have a GREAT way to share & communicate, on what's supposed to be a "SOCIAL" network, & everyone seems so UNsociable. SAD! :( & to top it all off, the scant few "likes" or comments i HAVE gotten, were FROM busy pros! Obviously, all the others just wanted to increase their number of "friends" for whatever reason people seem to need to do that. Oh well. I'll just enjoy the memories of how it USED to be, before we had easier ways of sharing & communicating, & people shared & communicated more! LOL!

  2. Clinton is absolutely correct. Today's stars of ventriloquism have reached fans around the world. As quickly as I can type this, so can thousands of others. I'm certain Jeff, Terry and other top pros are swamped with e-mail and fan mail.

    That said, Terry Fator has personally corresponded with me several times by e-mail. The stars are still sharing people. You can see that by the time they take to connect with others at the VentHaven ConVENTion.

  3. This is a delicate line to cross because I have a responsibility to respond to vents because I am the consultant for ventriloquism for the Puppeteers of America and I am on the hospitality committee for the vent convention. I just think what it was like when pros answered my questions and I felt wonderful that they cared. That is what I want my responses to create, careness. I think Tom is one of the lucky ones that gets a reply from Terry Fator, I have tried myself and have received nothing. Even a short reply would satisfy me, but when someone gets snubbed, it's not a good feeling and when that happens the excitement for vent dies out and then they leave for good.

    I must agree with Keith, pros either don't reply or they pick and choose who they want to reply to. Don't believe me, check out some of the pages of pros from facebook. We now live in a world where everybody is put in a certain class.

    If it weren't for folks like Bill Boley, Johnny Main, Finis Robinson, Chilli Willie Reed, Clinton and many others that cared for me, I would not exist today in the vent world. (no funny comment please)

  4. Anonymous4/29/2011

    Dear Keith, and Anonymous, Considering everything, It is amazing that we have so many aids to our craft of venting! There are books, Videos, and several blogs and ventriloquist sites. Clinton's is just one. And, it is a very good one! Clinton shares so much of his talent and knowledge. I send him a lot of stuff myself; perhaps too much sometimes, but I understand that he is a very busy guy, so I don't expect that he respond to every e-mail or cartoon I send. I figure, maybe he'll get a laugh and that's enough for me. But, he certainly puts in double time and will respond in time to serious questions, or suggestions.

    I personally feel that the heavy scheduled performers don't have anywhere the amount of time needed to respond as a friend on face-book, or even to direct e-mails. They probably do mentor some folks but the more of that they do the thinner gets the string.

    The blogs and sites have news-letters, and most of the people that run them are in a business. Still, they want and enjoy your inputs.

    If you want to show off, and that is a good thing for a ventriloquist to do, there is U-tube and may I suggest the VENT-Haven Convention! You want friends? Lord Have Mercy, give that place a try and it is coming up in July! You'll need a few days to recover after that experience! I can promise you! Go a day early and stay a day after, just to catch up with yourself.

    BTW, you will meet some great vents, some wonderful stars, and you will get a chance to ask them questions and shake their hands! They will give excellent classes that will teach you how to improve your craft!

    Sign up for the open mike night or day performances and also get to see folks of all talent levels. I could go on and on, but don't allow yourself to feel blue because other vents are busy. Just go out and do your venting! Entertain folks for pay or for free and enjoy the feed back from your audiences. Along the way of doing that, you will latch onto some folks that you will really enjoy, and may even wind up teaching, if you are asked.

    Finally, how about starting a local ventriloquist club, yourself? Put an add in the paper or on a local radio station and see what happens. Hang up a few fliers at your library or Magic Shop and you may hit the pay dirt you seek!

    I hope my words help in some way to dispel your blues! Enjoy! Look for new ways to connect! And do Perform!

    Regards, Joe "Capt.Joe" Radle </:O)