Entropy

The biography of Jordan Gardiner

Entropy: the degradation of the matter and energy in the universe to an ultimate state of inert uniformity. A process of degradation or running down or a trend to disorder. – Merriam-Webster

Entropy: a state of disorder or chaos. It is the scientific measure for the uncertainty of an outcome.

To me, entropy means chaos. 'Entropy' is my journey out of chaos. -Jordan Gardiner

Some characters depicted in Entropy have been given aliases to protect their identities.

The following is a true story:

Prologue

I thought that having the perfect woman, wealth in friends, and vast amounts of money would fill the void of my inner disatisfaction; it didn't. I fought relentlessly to attain happiness and bliss. Sometimes I did attain it and it was perfect. Everything felt right, in place, in order, and there was a sense of symmetry like no other. The problem was that it only lasted for a moment. I've dedicated years of my life for one very specific state of being; this silly little thing is everything to us, it's what the world craves, desires, and works toward. And all it is; simple chemistry in the brain of every woman, man, and child. Every emotion and feeling you have ever endured is a product of your body regulating its resources. Love is a mystery, love is devine, love is meant to be. No, love is science. Love is just a chemical reaction, and it can be minipulated and used. Whenever we're sad or happy, angry or depressed, or even feeling strong affection toward another, there is no cosmic or meaningful reason behind our feelings and choices; it was just biology. Fate and destiny, meant to be; only rationalizations to make excuses for our shortcomings or luck. The world is random, the world is chaotic, the world is entropy. I wasn't always like this. I like to think of myself as being a rational individual, but most of the time I am not. I once had a huge argument with an ex-girlfriend, it was the only argument I ever had with her, it started because I felt like the universe had a plan and that us being together wasn’t random. She disagreed and it shocked me that she didn’t think we were part of some bigger destiny together – I ended up stomping off in frustration feeling a little bit hurt. I think I have always believed in higher purposes and prophecy stemming mostly from vanity, and the idea that I actually matter in this huge cold universe, that it actually knows and gives a shit about who I am. It’s kind of pathetic, but I also like to think that it’s kind of romantic that something like cosmic recognition would separate me from a lump of coal. Tragedy leads to inspiration; that's what I've always believed. It's the tragedies and the problems rippling from them that built me into the man I am today. Without the tragedy I would have never obtained any form of success. Tragedy, pain, sorrow; It lies in all of us, unpreventable and lingering. Without a way to come to terms with it we're all forced to bare it in our hearts. Terrible feelings subside and you may

find yourself discharging your stomachs content into the toilet out of the shock and disbelief of our reality. How can we really cope? How can I cope while knowing the girl I was commited and promised to for so many years is seeking pleasure in other men. She enjoys it, I dread it. I think of her while she's completely forgotten about me. She doesn't have a sliver of compassion knowing that it destroys me, or worse, she does care but chooses to do it anyway. Human nature is a cruel thing. How much of it is really natural though? Endless numbers feel no guilt in wishing the worst upon the world. Used and abused, you remain giving the best you have knowing it's not good enough. You work towards being your best and only self to find no reward. With injustice like this it's no wonder people become so self destructive. Crys for help go ignored while you drastically take measures out of spite from the violent and angry emotions or the feelings of disconnection and detachment from reality. You fall deep into a black hole void of happiness and self worth. Why would I wish to be part of a world so cold and cruel? Is this all there is left to feel? Thoughts of suicide sink in and make home to my thoughts as I stare down the barrel of my gun. They sit their waiting and expecting their presence to take effect in this shuttered and dank mind. I could accept death, I could give into these self destructive feelings, I could accept the false satisfaction of making a rash decision and embrace the thoughts of their broken world. But I am a fighter, and a survivor. I can only let thoughts like these dance around in my head and eat me away for so long. I've been here before, I've been here more than once. A little bit of my pride, glory, ego, and self worth sift back into place; the strongest opponents to my minds current occupants. I've been at rock bottom before. I know that if I pick myself back up and reinvent myself once again I will only find a demise back here in this hole again. Looking back on myself I realize that every time I have climbed out of the hole; I come back stronger, more determined, and more successful than I've ever been. Perhaps this curse is my greatest blessing. I am doomed to return to this hole until it molds me into the best I can be. Each and every time making further strides to success. I fight for my right to feel pain, because without it I wouldn't strive to become something more, to become my best self and win life's greatest prize; the opportunity to give the world my greatest and final valediction.

Chapter 1
Playing The Part

The camera flashed as I posed in the black leather seat. The female photographer instructed me to stand up and shift my weight to the left. I smiled and did as she asked. A couple more shots and that was a wrap. I thankfully relaxed my body now that the shoot was over. The photographer approached me after turning off her camera. “I’d like to go over some details about which pictures to select,” the photographer said offering her input, “these would be perfect for your close-ups and these full body shots I’m about to show you give off a real authentic look.” I looked at the photographs, nodding in agreement. “You're right, good taste,” I complimented. I walked off the set to where the makeup artists had made their establish. Randy Chartrand was doing a young model's hair and make-up. “You’re lucky you know!” I notified the young model. “Whys that?” she asked challengingly. “It's not often that people so early to begin get dealt with by professionals such as Randy here,” I smirked. “Finally somebody appreciates what I’m doing!” Randy replied with amusement. "How’s it going, Randy?” I asked with a smile. Randy Chartrand, this was the man responsible for bringing me here. He was scouting across the country looking for talent. His team told me I had the spark they were looking for, that I had an edge in the entertainment industry. Being a film actor had always been a dream and life goal for me. Being invited to this convention with the world’s top casting directors and producers seemed to have been the first promising opportunity I had. Randy had finished styling the model then she strut off to her shoot. "You come here! I want to do something with your hair," Randy demanded me. As well as being a talent scout, Randy was also a professional hair and makeup artist. He had previously been put in charge of doing the make-up of several famous stars and events in the past such as Madonna and even Wayne Gretzky’s wedding.

“Lucas, I’d like you to take some extra time with this one. I think he could be the success story we want,” Randy explained to Lucas, the hairdresser, before walking off to deal with some more anxious models. "What’s your name?" Lucas asked, grabbing a clipboard full of names off the table. “Jordan Gardiner,” I replied as he had begun looking through his list. "Is this you?" Lucas asked me while pointing to a name that read "Jordan Fordyce." “No,” I replied simply, "I’m Jordan Gardiner. See? Right there," as I pointed to the correct name. “Thank you,” said the hairdresser as he motioned me to sit in a chair. Randy came back over to ensure that the hairdresser took his time with me. Randy was betting it all on me, he thought that out of every individual he had auditioned, I would have the best chance of succeeding. “He gets it!” Randy told Lucas as he continued with my hair, “you hand a commercial script to any fifteen year old and it’s just a piece of paper to them, but Jordan gets it, he adds personality to the paper, he brings it to life! He’s quiet, so you don’t expect it, and then when you put him on the spot, BOOM, he hits you in the face! Out of nowhere he captures your interest!” Lucas finished with my hair and showed me in a mirror, “What do you think?” he asked with confidence. My hair had a lot of volume and looked very stylish. “I look like one of the models,” I smiled. “That’s exactly the point!” Lucas smiled back. After getting my hair and makeup done, it was time for my first audition. I walked out of the main hall and traveled down a set of escalators to the bottom floor of the Shaw Conference Center of which the event was taking place. I had traveled from British Columbia to Edmonton, Alberta to try my luck with the acting opportunity. The acting segment of the convention was approaching it's time. The event had a total of four segments of auditions: acting, singing, modeling, and dance. I was participating in acting and dance. Randy was particularly fond of me for my acting ability, he immediately put me through to the dance audition after telling him I could dance during the preliminary audition it took to be invited here. My acting audition started in roughly ten minutes, I left for the auditorium and made my way outside the front doors. During the remaining time, I read my script aloud. I glanced up to notice I was catching some attention. “Hey, you’ve got that down. The agents are going to love you,” a stranger told me as he approached. “Thanks, I've been tackling this for three days straight now!” I exclaimed. I was anxious and wanted to assure myself that I had my lines practiced to perfection. It wasn’t the type of event where the business invited you to come take your chance at stardom. It was a six-hundred-ninety-five dollar fee to register for the event and then all the extra fees on top of that such as travel, accommodation, and stylist charges. I paid a lot of money to get there and you only got one shot. I wasn’t going to screw it up. “I'm Lee,” the stranger informed me while holding up his hand. “It's good to meet you. I'm sure the agents are going to like you too. You got a clear voice.”

“I don’t know, but I’ll be rooting for you,” Lee laughed before continuing on with his business. I found Lee strange, Lee was of Asian ethnicity, he had long black hair, and piercing green eyes. He didn't seem to have had much confidence in his ability but it didn't seem to bother him. It appeared his motive for being there wasn't for exposure or discovery and I intended to question him on it. It bewildered me for someone to have so much opportunity surrounding them and not be interested in it. The doors to the audition room had opened and the large group of people that formed during the wait gradually walked into the room. I had prepared to recite two commercials from memory in front of a camera, and to directors and talent agents. This was the kind of chance I'd dreamed about since I was 12 years old. It started out with the small image in my head of pretending to be someone else in front of a camera. With one small thought I had as a child, it had become a curiosity. Curiosity turned into a fascination, fascination turned into a dream. There were many chairs set up before a small stage as well as panel of acting agents. A video camera set up at the back of the room and a TV exactly horizontal from the camera on stage followed by a white X laying beside the television. When everyone was seated the acting agents began to give instructions to the participating actors. "Will males between the ages 14 and 17 please line up to this side of the room?" a man among the panel politely asked while pointing to the left wall. I stood up with the other participants and lined up along the wall. After the man could see that everyone was in order he continued with his instructions. "Okay, one at a time we are going to have you walk up on stage and stand on the white X. You must stand there because that is where the camera is recording and you will appear on the TV beside you. Make sure you follow our instructions because we do choose you based on your ability to follow simple instructions as well as your acting. The other day we had a girl who couldn't find the X and it took us about 5 minutes to actually get her to stand where we wanted," the agent let off a short giggle, "now I’m not singling anyone out or anything but yes, she did have a particular hair color." Everyone in the room let off short chuckles after the agent's remark. "Well, let’s begin!" the agent concluded while taking his seat. As I waited in line, I observed the people that appeared before me. Looking for their mistakes to make sure I did not do the same. To my surprise, nearly everyone that recited their script had forgotten one or two lines and were unmistakable nervous. Lee had appeared before the audience and began his script, “A whopper isn't just a burger, it's the fresh tomato and...uh line? Oh yeah! Fresh tomato and lettuce grilled to perfection and um....um...shit, never mind.” Lee walked off the stage without finishing his script. It was then my turn, I walked up in front of the camera and the audience confidently. I tried to make sure of one thing while I had performed my script: that I smiled as much as possible. Something so obvious to help my chances, but yet something everyone else had seemed to have missed. I delivered the lines from memory with near perfection, "Ask yourself, do I want it or do

I need it? Then look at the price tag and think, does it matter? Walk into Winners and find brand names and designer clothing for up to twenty to eighty percent less than regular department stores. Winners, where desire and practicality meet, so when you need high quality clothing and affordable prices, think Winners!" I was sure I’d gotten the attention of these representatives but would soon find out later. When I was done I was asked to sit back down and look on the bulletin board later for a call back. I chose a seat beside Lee and patted him on the shoulder. “What went wrong, man?” “I just forgot my lines, it's all good,” he laughed. “You don't seem that concerned, if that was me, I would be beating myself up right now,” I told him. “My parents just recommended that I go to this stupid thing. They said it would be cool if I got on a magazine or commercial or something. They paid my upfront fee for me so I basically just came to meet people.” Lee and I conversed for the remaining time until the auditions were over. He had a lot of interesting ideas about society and socialism. We agreed to meet up later. The day had approached evening, I walked out into the main auditorium that was enormous in size, it felt as if I were walking through an indoor stadium with a runway stage through the center. I had finished my acting audition, but the opportunity wasn't over for me yet. I had one audition left that evening and this time my play of words wasn't the game; it was in the field of dance and movement. I felt like I didn't deserve the benefit of doubt for being a good dancer, I had very little experience and everything I knew about dance came from watching people on a video blogging website known as YouTube. I took a seat in the great stadium sized room and watched a seminar about how the industry works. A well-groomed, middle aged man walked out onto the stage and introduced himself as Bob Luke. He informed his audience that he was there representing Disney, he talked a little bit about a film he was involved in called “Enchanted” that was about a princess in the cartoon world that somehow ended up into our human world in New York City. We could expect it sometime next year. Bob Luke spoke about how it was crucial to get good grades if you were a young actor. “When you're cast in a production, you miss a lot of school and students tend to fail or have their grades drop dramatically because we pull them out for long periods of time. We do like to choose students with better grades because we don't want to put their education at risk,” he explained then carried on about the process of landing an agent and what to watch out for, “if you speak with an agent and they demand any fee's upfront, be very skeptical. Most agents that take you on will get paid when you do, they take a percentage of your earnings for the jobs they get you.” Bob Luke spoke for about an hour. I had a valuable understanding of the way the industry worked after listening and absorbing his words and knowledge. He started taking some questions and I had a question that had been itching the back of my head for quite some time. He finally

selected hand and I stood up to address him, “If we don't happen to find work at this convention, what advice can you give us to pursue a career in this industry on our own?” Bob Luke stood on stage for a few moments thinking about the question, “That is a good question. You can't do it on your own, not in this industry. It's usually not about what you know, it's about who you know. Your success goes about as far as your connections. What number are you?” “4004,” I replied. Bob Luke turned to another area of the stage and continued taking questions. Every participant at the event was given a number so producers, directors, and agents had something to keep track of us with. Before Bob Luke had left the stage, he introduced another middle aged man, Michael Katz. Michael told his story about when he was a young, aspiring actor. He landed a pretty good agent and was going to a large number of auditions for movies and television shows alike. There came one audition where a director had chosen from hundreds of people and narrowed his decision down to two young men. The role for the film required the character to be bald so Michael and his competition both shaved their heads. The end result was that Michael didn't get the role and he was crushed. His agent noticed how down Michael was and told him not to worry and that the other guy was going nowhere. That other guy was named Tom Cruise. The seminar came to an end and my mind was anew with stories and knowledge about the industry. I took in and soaked up every word that was spoken during the seminar , I truly believed that it was my calling and future career, but destiny may have had other plans for me. I left the auditorium to find Lee leaning up against the wall. I approached him, explained that I was going to grab some pizza and invited him to join me. Lee was quick to say yes as it seemed he had nothing to do. “I can't wait for the big dance tonight,” Lee announced as we headed toward the pizza stand. “I can't either, dance and mingle with all the models, it should be fun,” I replied while mentally drooling. “My girlfriend would not be happy if she knew how many models were around here,” Lee laughed. “I'm girlfriend-free, I get to be a free-spirit tonight!” “Lucky,” Lee concluded. “I'd have considered you the lucky one. I've never had a girlfriend in my entire life,” I admitted, “but I have a feeling everything is going to change for me this weekend.” “It probably will for a lot of people, we can walk back into that auditorium and sit amongst the crowd, any one of those people could be well on their way to famous by tomorrow. It could even be you!” Lee exclaimed. “It better be me!” I said over-confidently, “I worked way too hard and spent far too much money to let it go any other way.” “But what if it doesn't go the right way, sometimes no matter how hard you try, it's out of your control and it's always going to be. So just be yourself and don't try too hard, because it may disappoint you.”

I understood where Lee was coming from. It depressed me, he was self loathing and I knew he had tried hard for something and was ultimately disappointed, that was the manufacture of his logic. I admired him in ways, he gave up any plan and sense of direction. His motto was: live in the moment, do what feels right, and enjoy it as it goes, that way, he couldn't get his hopes up and ever be disappointed again. However, it was the product of living in fear. It was nearly time for the dance segment of the auditions and I had dismissed myself from the conversation. “I'll be watching you from the audience!” Lee shouted after me. I found myself a seat amongst the audience and watched models walk up and down the large runway. -- I knew that I would be on that runway in front of thousands of eyes. Across from the end of the runway was a stand where the panel of judges were located. They had their notebooks open and occasionally jotted down some scribbles on certain models. Dance was something I didn't have much experience in and felt very self conscious about. Earlier I had found an area to practice a few back flips when a young female model in her twenties approached me and complimented my dancing ability. She was beautiful and carried a conversation with me. I wasn't used to that. I was young, not very good looking, and usually got extremely nervous around beautiful women, however, here and now I spoke with crystal clear confidence, and felt my looks were an advantage. I was a completely different person. Over night it appeared I had done a full 180 with myself. I looked good, I spoke with confidence, I had talent to put to the test. I was like an actor playing the part of someone who I viewed was much more then I. I told the model a little bit about myself and how I learned what I could do. The model had explained to me that she'd never seen anything like it and would make sure she watched my audition. She gave me a glowing confidence for what I was about to do. The last of the models had walked down the runway and the MC announced that the dance segment of the auditions were about to take place. “Will all participating dancers proceed behind stage and be ready to audition,” the MC said into the microphone. I got up from my seat and walked behind the curtains, stretching to getting myself warmed up. I began shaking and couldn't get a grip on myself, I had never danced for anyone in my life and I had to perform in front of thousands of people. I didn't know if I was capable of performing for such a massive audience in something I didn't believe I was good at. It was too late to back out and I forced myself to let go of my second thoughts. “Whatever happens, happens,” I whispered to myself silently and closed my eyes to regain my composure. I placed myself on the staircase that inverted to the runway platform, listening to the first performance on stage. The song came to an end and the first dancer came backstage bursting with energy. He gave high fives to other participating dancers as he came off the platform in victory because he knew he nailed it. The MC called the number 4001 to perform and the next dancer came forward and disappeared past the black curtains. “Wait a minute! Were you the guy doing back flips earlier?” a girl with long red hair dressed in a leotard asked.

“Probably,” I responded, “I didn’t see anyone else doing back flips.” “Oh my god, that's awesome! Whats your name?” “Jordan, yours? “Rachel,” she said happily, “are you okay?” “Just a little nervous,” I replied. I guess she could tell I had stage fright from my heavy breathing and not being able to sit still. She seemed like a fun, outgoing kind of girl; the type you could really be yourself around. She encouraged me and made me feel like I could really pull through the audition. She was to perform right after me and she started to emphasize that she was getting nervous too. She still kept a positive notion despite her fear and I admired her for that. "Now we have participant 4003 performing. Good luck!" announced the MC on stage. My number was going to be called next. “Jordan, I have a really good idea! Want to hear it?” Rachel asked with hopefulness. “Alright, let’s hear it,” I nodded. “You and I should perform together, right now! We could just freestyle it and dance off each other.” “As much as I would love to, it’s literally a last minute thing. Our first practice run would be the real deal,” I said regretfully. “We could totally pull it off!” Rachel pushed. I hardly felt comfortable stepping up on a stage alone, and to perform with an experienced dancer and look like a fool should I fail, I was capable enough to look like a fool on my own, and what a better way to do it than have the stage all to myself. Before I knew it, they called participant 4004. I walked onto the platform and heard Rachel whisper good luck to me as I got ready to walk out from the curtains. “Performer 4004 is going to show us some break dancing, good luck 4004,” the MC said as he cued the music. I stepped out onto the runaway to view thousands of analytical eyes on me.

Chapter 2
Let A Star Be Just A Star And A Girl Just A Dream

I sent myself flying into the air with a back flip and dove into a spinning maneuver upon landing. I jumped furiously out of my spin and into a hand stand on a single arm and twisted my legs into a cool shape. I was flipping and spinning through the air perfectly with the beat of the music. Screams, shouts, and clapping echoed through the auditorium for me. The rest came naturally. I let go of the routine I had created and merely let my body flow into whatever felt right. The bass went boom and the clarity of the music from high quality speakers pushed vibrations under my feet with an overwhelming sense of accomplishment to me. I stopped and stood in the middle of the stage for a moment to stare out into the endless sea of people. I remember so much emotion overtaking me like to the ending of an inspirational movie. I never felt such a rush in my life. It wasn't a rush of adrenaline or fear, it was like you were experiencing a whole new world for the first time. I was at peace with myself and had been surrounded by a sense of amazement. I could not believe that I not only escaped my fear of failing, but I had done something much greater then I ever imagined I would. I felt important for the first time. From my lack of experience I was lead to believe that I was would never excel at something I wanted to be. I never thought that I would ever have a chance of meeting the standards of great people because I did not meet my own. I wanted and expected myself to be nothing but the best. I made it my goal to work towards perfection. Back home I had friends who had put me down for wanting to accomplish big things in my life. They told me that there would always be someone better than me so it was unless to try and do anything meaningful. I was faced with the urge to prove them wrong and that motivated me to keep working until my body could not longer take it. I used to do laps around my neighbourhood and would not slow down until I literally began spitting up blood. I used to attempt dance moves continuously until my body was covered in cuts, bruises, and until my muscles would seize up, being sore for days. I pushed myself past the pain and exhaustion because only those who can fight past all the obstacles can truly become something more.

My lack of confidence in myself seem to be unimportant now. Perhaps all I needed was to believe in myself. I fell back into reality and continued to do what I was meant to on that glamourous stage. I threw myself into another spin and jumped forward into front hand spring and then did a back flip landing softly in a relaxed position on my stomach as the music came to an end. Clapping and whistling erupted from the audience. I picked myself up off the stage, walked to the end, and presented myself with a glorious bow. I dismissed myself from the stage and disappeared behind the curtains. “Need an aspirin?” Rachel asked as she came running up the steps to congratulate me. “I'm good. I did it, I actually did it,” I stated in disbelief. I was breathing hard and tried to prevent the dizziness from overcoming me. The exertion took a lot out of me. I gave every last bit of energy into the performance and had to grab onto the railing to stop myself from falling over. I had no doubt impressed the agents, directors, and producers. I even swore I'd seen one of their mouth's drop open during my performance. I couldn't help but notice that Bob Luke and Michael Katz were up on the judge stand, that would prove to be interesting. “Well everyone, it looks like we all got served!” the MC joked, “so now we have participant 4005 joining us with her hip hop. Good luck 4005.” “Good luck, Rachel,” I smiled. “You were amazing!” she whispered as she ran up the rest of the steps and vanished through the curtain. After my breath returned to me, I relocated myself back to the audience to view Rachel's performance. Rachel was there on stage doing robotic hip hop moves and then bust out into several back hand springs. She looked more like a gymnast then a hip hop dancer. I had been wearing a bright green t-shirt and dark blue jeans which made me easy to pick out in a crowd. A few people in my proximity turned to look at me. “Yeah, that's the break dancer.” I heard an individual say a couple rows back. I leaned back into my chair and comfortably soaked up the attention. I noticed the director from Disney, Bob Luke, appear distracted as he was panning through the audience rather than observing Rachel's performance. Bob Luke continued looking through the audience until it seemed as if he were glaring at me. He got up from his seat, came down from the stand, and started a casual walk in my direction. He approached me. "Were you the young man performing just before her?" he asked while pointing to Rachel on stage. “Yes, that was me," I replied in bewilderment as to why he came to talk to me. "Will you meet me here tomorrow morning at 6:00 AM? I'm putting together a show with a unique group of people specifically chosen by me," Bob Luke said, “I'm setting up a showcase with the participants I liked the most.” I was getting well recognized and that was my chance to get out there and let people see what I could really do. “Yeah, I'll definitely come meet you!” I replied eagerly.

"Alright, perfect. Come speak with me after the auditions are over. Thank you,” he said appreciatively and returned to his seat on the judge stand to observe the remaining performances. The remaining dancers moved with precision and grace. Some dancers appeared to maneuver with such purpose and experience. There was so much talent there, so much ability, so many dreams waiting for their chance to sparkle and shine. I could not understand how I was held on a higher pedestal then they. No one else possessed the ability to break dance, I figured that was what made me stand out. I was the only one to represent my genre of dance. It came time for the vocal talent, artists with beautiful voices sang and exerted their emotion into every song. You could tell that these performers felt ever word that came out of their mouth. One girl stuck out more then the rest, impressively, she was a young girl merely 13 years of age who could hit notes as high as Christina Aguilera. She had short brown hair and wore an attractive red dress which exposed her shoulders and back. Her voice was captivating and luring. A few more vocalists hit the stage and that concluded the showcase. “That's the remainder of our participants. Good job to everyone who performed today, we enjoyed your performances,” the MC spoke, “if we could have everyone make their way out of the main auditorium now so we can set up for the dance. The dance starts at 8:00 PM and we'd love to see you there. We also have our brunch and callbacks starting at 9:00 AM tomorrow morning. Goodnight everyone.” I got up to look for Bob Luke and noticed the 13 year old vocalist digging through her purse on one of the seats. I decided to compliment her on the amazing voice. “Hey, good job up there. Where'd you learn to sing?” “Oh, thank you!” she replied, raising her head, “just on my own.” “That's amazing. I don't know anyone so young that can sing quite like you,” I explained. “Yeah, I'm not sure how I do it. I just open my mouth and out comes sound!” she giggled. I laughed at her remark. “I'm Jordan, by the way.” “I'm Kristina,” she smiled. A hand appeared on my shoulder and I spun around to find Bob Luke standing behind me. “Break dancer, I see you've found 4083 for me,” Bob Luke stated. I found it kind of vague that Bob Luke called us by our numbers rather then learning our names. Bob began making Kristina the same offer he had made me not so long ago. “I'll do it,” she told him with excitement. “Great,” Bob said, “the show is over now so if you'll both come with me, I can explain to you what exactly we're going to be doing tomorrow. Bob Luke led us in front of the stand as dozens of others joined us. I recognized everyone else in the select group because they were all on the stage within the last few hours. “Thank you all for choosing to participant in my show,” Bob Luke told everyone, “I'm putting this extended showcase together to show off the best of the talented. I've seen what you can do and I have something specific in mind for you all. I want the singers and the dancers to separate into two groups. We had spread out into the separate groups and Bob continued, “We're going to do the story of a young girl. She is nerdy and wants to fit in with the popular group. Singers, you will be the nerdy group and dancers, you will be the popular group. The objective of the dancers

is to try to show the young girl how to be cool. She's not going to succeed and go back to her own group to find that's where she fits in. Does everyone understand the story?” The majority of singers and dancers either said yes out loud or shook their head to confirm Bob's question. “Good, I've selected participant 4083 to be our young nerdy girl. You've got the lead.” “Oh my god,” Kristina said out loud covering her mouth with her hands, “seriously?” “Yes,” Bob smiled. “Now that everyone has a general idea of what's going on you're free to go, except for 4083, I need a little extra time for you.” I left the auditorium to join the masses of people that had collected in the outer room. I located Lee and we decided to use the free time to interact before the arranged celebration. I was excited for the night club style dance, it was practically my natural environment. I used to attend my school dances and would make the gym floor my own when attempting a few moves. Lee and I mingled with the crowd and it brought me to an interesting observation. Everyone was here for a similar cause: to be noticed, be discovered and to hopefully accomplish something with their talent. When you bring so many people together supporting a similar cause, it feels like a family. A group of participants formed within minutes and peers began performing, not for the recognition of industry representatives, but for the recognition of each other. We formed a circle and everyone took turns performing in the center of the room. Whether it was their ability to sing, to dance, or to act, everyone did their part. Other dancers, singers, models, and actors with funny and positive personalities were there doing what they did best. I eventually jumped on top of a table in the middle of room and did a hand stand on the edge. Even the MC took an interest in what was going on and began beat boxing me a rhythm while I showed off. A couple Asian girls nicknamed me Jackie Chan for my acrobatic movements. I was enjoying myself, it hardly felt like any time had passed until the doors to the auditorium re-opened. Flashing colours ignited out of the room as the music started. The mass entered the auditorium with energy, giving the place some life. I never seen a more positive and outgoing crowd come together in my entire life. Many of the models jumped onto the runway and began doing walks and poses above the dance floor. Lee and I watched the models for a few minutes and then Lee urged me to come sit down at the tables. “You have to meet some of my other friends,” Lee insisted. He introduced me to none other than Rachel and a guy with black spiky hair named Chett. “Awe, no way!” You're friends with the break dancer?” Rachel asked Lee. “Yeah, he's my buddy,” Lee smiled. “Fucking hot!” Rachel blurted. “Don't you have a boyfriend, Rachel?” Chett interrupted. “Shush!” Rachel hissed. “We're going for a smoke,” Chett said, “you guys should join us.”

I explained that I wasn't a smoker and Lee was polite enough to stick with me. As Rachel left to walk past Lee and I my arm accidentally brushed against Rachel's breast. “You touched my boob!” Rachel said with a flirty voice. “It was an accident.” “Better have been!” she joked. Rachel gave us both hugs before her and Chett went outside to the massive balcony that was structured along the south end of the building. Lee and I returned to the dance floor, I walked into the middle and began tossing together some moves. It didn't take long until a dense group formed around me. I was receiving compliments left and right and a few girls decided to sandwich me as I was dancing. Lee was grinding against Rachel when she came from back from her smoke. During the dance, it seemed like I was literally being handed women. “Hey, Jordan! She said I was a really good grinder!” Lee announced pointing in front of him with a big smile on his face. I laughed as Rachel came over with Lee to converse. I had never been very social in my past but Lee knew socialism very well, Lee had demonstrated how he made many friends very quickly as he walked around, having me help introduce ourselves to nearly half the crowd. I had never felt complete enlightenment, happiness that seemed to have no flaws. I felt more proud and happy with myself then I ever had. Just when I thought everything was perfect it got better. As I was dancing with a few attractive models that Lee had taken the liberty to approach with me, I had noticed one very specific girl who vastly stood out of the crowd. She was all by herself moving her hips in a gentle rhythm. She had beautiful brown eyes, brown hair that complimented those eyes, a glowing smile and notably white teeth. I continuously glanced at her, drawn in by her beauty. She looked like she was radiating just as much energy that I felt I had. “Should I make a move on this girl?” I asked Lee. "Go for it!" he encouraged, "she’s really pretty." With all the outstanding success I've had tonight, how could I not have the courage to go talk to her, I fathomed to myself. I hesitated for a moment and then willingly approached her. "Hey, I think you're absolutely gorgeous, I have to dance with you!" I said loudly over the music. She smiled her gorgeous smile and asked, “Really?” sounding surprised. “Yes," I replied instantly. Her smile secretly whispered flattery to me. “Sure! Hold on though, I need to go talk to a friend and I'll be right back. Stay there!” she exclaimed. A few minutes went by and then another few minutes. I began feeling discouraged. She isn't interested and made an excuse to get away, I rationalized. I smiled with a dominant thought, however, I'm enjoying myself far too much to let this discourage me.” I saw Kristina and began making my way through the mass to her. Unexpectedly, the gorgeous girl I had asked to dance intercepted me.

"Hey, I'm back. Do you want to dance now?" she asked in hopefulness. "Sure," I smiled. She wrapped her arms around me as we began moving back and forth inside the crowd. She then put her head down on my shoulder after ten minutes and it seemed she had become really comfortable in my embrace. I led her away from the dance floor to a more isolated spot so I could talk to her. "What’s your name?" I asked "Jordan," she replied, "yours?" I was in complete and utter disbelief. This amazing girl had the same name as me. "Jordan," I replied. "Yeah, what’s yours?" she asked again, not realizing that I had answered her question. "Jordan," I said again and laughed, "my name is Jordan too." “No way! How old are you?” “I'm fifteen, yourself? “I'm fourteen, but my birthday is less than 2 weeks away.” Jordan Fordyce wanted to go get a drink and we continued learning about each other as we walked just outside of the auditorium. We grabbed some styrofoam cups and filled them with water, watching the air bubbles float to the top of the jug. “So that's the really cute guy who asked you to dance,” a vivid blonde said from behind us. “Leah!” Fordyce scolded as her face turned bright red. I guessed she was the friend Jordan went to talk to before she came to dance with me. “This is my friend, Leah,” Fordyce introduced. “So did you kiss her yet?” Leah asked, directing the question towards me. “None of your business,” I replied. “Hey, shes like my sister. I have to look out for her,” Leah said playfully as she hugged my female counterpart. Jordan and Leah had an over the top girl chat with heightened voices and girly giggles. I leaned against the table sipping on my water while observing in astonishment. “Do you want to come sit down?” Fordyce asked. We found ourselves some black leather chairs at the far end of the room and sat down into relaxation. “So what did you audition for?” Fordyce asked me, ”other then dancing, I saw you break dancing and you're really good.” I took the compliment and told her, “I also auditioned for acting. I did a commercial this morning.” “Really? How did you do?” “I think I did pretty good. I'll see if I get any call backs tomorrow. What did you two do?” “I was just in modeling. Leah too,” Fordyce replied. “You should do your commercial for us,” Leah insisted. “Yeah, I want to see how good you are,” Fordyce added.

I was a little shy at first, but she had talked me into it. After I recited my lines to her she gave me a simple nod and said, "I'd buy it." For the next hour we talked about our goals and our reasons for being there. I told her how I was an aspiring young actor trying to make it in the film industry and she told me about how she dreamed of being a model. Time flew by and I lost myself in conversation with Jordan and Leah. Eventually they asked for my contact information. We couldn't find anything to write on so we had all exchanged and wrote our information on the backs of our numbered tags.

“Well, I want to go back in and dance now. I'll leave you two alone,” said Leah. Leah got up and entered the main auditorium. Jordan got up from her seat, sat down in my lap, put her arm around my neck, and raised her legs over mine. “Even Leah likes you. That's saying something,” Jordan complimented. “There's a lot I can say about you.” “Like what? “You're gorgeous, beautiful, sweet.” “Luring?” Jordan asked as her face moved closer to mine. “Very” “Am I enchanting?” “Yes.” “Good.” “Would you like to kiss me?” I asked, our faces so close I could whisper to her. “Maybe,” she replied under her breath. “Lets find out,” I said as I pressed my lips against hers.

I had completely lost any sense of time as a heart-warming shock fluttered through my chest. The night was nearing 11:00 PM and I had remembered that I needed to get up at 4:00 AM to get ready and back there for the Disney director by 6:00 AM. I felt saddened that I had to leave for the opportunity when all I wanted to do was stay with the girl. We ended the night with a quick kiss and I told her to look for me tomorrow. Little did I know, the girl I met that night would soon trigger a chain reaction in the decisions I made for the rest of my life.

The Backflip

I stood in the middle of the field, contemplated the manuver, then jumped up as high as possible, throwing all my weight backward. I landed in the soil with my chest making a thud. I gasped for air as it felt like someone had punched me in the gut. I regained my breath, stood up again, and attempted the backflip once more. Thud My chest smacked into the ground once more and knocked the air out of me. Without giving myself a chance to feel discouraged, I tossed myself into the air again, faster this time. This time I stuck my arms out to shield my chest. No loud thud, instead a shock rippled up my arms. I had landed on my palms and knees. I didn't have enough time to beat gravity to the chase. I looked around trying to figuire out how to pull off the stunt. Unable to think of a way, I went home scraped up and bruised. The next morning I returned to the field making continous attempts to accomplish the impressive maneuver. I pushed past the pain with my determination stemming from motivation. The ability wasn't going to escape me regardless of the physical pain it forced me to endure. I observed my surrounding once more and drew my attention toward a stone wall at the outskirts of the field. If I didn't have enough time to make a full rotation before I hit the ground, than surely jumping from a higher place would give me the time I sought after. I climbed upon the wall, looked down and felt that this was dangerous and I realized that I may snap my neck. But I wasn't going to gain anything without risking something. I turned my back to the 8 foot drop, leaned backward off the ledge. Adrenaline poured through me and I spun my body in the mid air, completed a full rotation, but in that moment, I lost control. I rotated too

far. A massive thud erupted from my body as I landed on my back sending a shudder through my spine. I slowly walked home bent forward, holding my back in defeat. In the morning my back felt sore but better. I returned to the field, climbed upon the stone wall and continued jumping off of it. Three days later after calculating, tweaking, and adjusting, I landed my first backflip. I tried exactly what I did before. I landed my second backflip, then my third, fourth, tenth. I repeated the sequence until it was branded into my memory. Then I played with it, I gave it a twist, I closed my eyes, I spread my arms, I simply jumped backward holding my position and flipped at the last possible moment before hitting the ground. The ability was mine, I had earned it.

Chapter 3
An Unfinished Goodbye

Three hours later my alarm clock erupted with that infamous buzzing noise. I grunted as I rolled over and pressed “Snooze” on the clock. I'm just going to rest my eyes for 5 more minutes, I thought to myself as I started drifting back to sleep. No! Got to wake up, big day! I grunted as I lifted myself out of bed. It was brutal mustering up the energy after so few hours of rest. I took a quick shower, brushed my teeth, put on my most flattering clothes and headed out to the cab. As I went back into downtown, the streets were almost completely empty. It was so peaceful compared to the previous day where my cab driver had to fight through traffic to get me to my destination. By 5:00 AM, I reached the conference centre, travelled down the many escalators and walked into the room just before the main auditorium. I noticed Rachel sleeping on one of the couches Jordan Fordyce and I were sitting on previously, I figured she spent the night there. I walked over to Randy's establish to find he hadn't arrived yet. I looked up at a notice on the wall that read: “Be here before 5:00 sharp. Don't be late!” signed Randy. I stood there waiting for about 20 minutes before Randy and his team arrived. They walked in carrying duffel bags and began emptying make up and hair products onto the their work stations. “Jordan, you were here before five weren't you. Good boy, I like people who listen.” And I like people who are punctual from time to time, I thought to myself. Lucas had me sit down in his chair again while consulting Randy on what he should do this time. “Today we're going for a more natural look,” Randy notified his team. After my hair and makeup was done, the place seemed to get a little bit livelier with people. I walked to the doors of the main auditorium and explained to the security guard that Bob Luke requested me, he unlocked the door for me and let me in. I spotted Bob Luke already speaking to a few performers. Bob Luke asked me to wait till the rest of the performers arrived. When Bob's select few were all there, he got straight to work. “Alright, listen up everyone, we have just 2 hours before we open the doors into the room and everyone needs to be in place and know what to do by then. Singers come with me backstage.

Half the group disappeared behind the curtain and our half sat down around some tables, socializing until the disney director required us. Hundreds of tables were being set up throughout the entire hall. I was feelings a little nervous and knew that those tables would soon be filled with people watching me. I didn't mind too much, I only wanted to impress one set of eyes after last night. Serge came and sat down among us, he was an athletic man who had helped Randy during the preliminary audition process. I met him when Randy first came to my hometown to audition me. Serge knew pop'n'lock and Bob Luke asked him help out in the show. “I should've slept an extra hour before coming here, he never does anything with the dancers till at least seven!” Serge claimed. “Really, I could've used some extra sleep,” I replied, resting my head on the table. Rachel came over to greet everyone and saw me, “Hey, you were chosen as well?” she asked me in awe. It turned out the Disney Director asked her to dance in the show alongside me. It seemed we would get to perform together after all. After 7:00, the director called a specific four dancers to the stage. Serge, Rachel, myself, and one other girl I happened to dance with the previous night. Bob gave us very quick and precise instructions with one practice run. “Our singer, Kristina,” Bob Luke began. Great, he finally learned a name, I thought. “will be dancing in the middle of the stage here and when she trips over this stool,” Bob gestured to the stool in the middle of the stage, “that's when I want the four of you to come out on stage and dance in the background. When she finishes her song I'm going to play your individual audition tracks you provided from your previous performance. When your song comes up that's when I want you to step forward individually and do a solo in front of Kristina. Except for you,” Bob finished as he pointed as me, “You're going to come in towards the end of Serge's audio track. I'm going to give you a cue and that's when I want you to do one of those flips.” Bob and I stood on stage for a few minutes discussing what he wanted me to do on stage specifically, and where he would sit in the audience so I could know where to look for my cue. Alright, lets do it once!” Bob insisted. We ran through the instructions a single time and Bob Luke let us go while he moved onto his next set. Bob quickly finished with his last set of performers and the show was to begin in half hour. “Alright everyone, gather in around me,” Bob shouted as we formed a semi-circle around him. I could tell Bob was getting ready to give a pep talk. “Ready or not, you're all performers! You are here to put on a show and should always be ready to work under pressure. If you are chosen to work with any company represented here, this will be one of the first things you learn.” Bob instructed one of the security guards to open the doors and let people in as he took a seat. All performers including myself stepped behind the curtains and awaited for the show to begin. The auditorium started flooding with people and they had begun to occupy the tables. When the area had become congested, the MC of the event presented himself on stage and talked about how we were chosen to be in the group as a whole.

“Over the past two days of auditions we noticed some remarkable talent! Many of you will be contacted and many of you will receive jobs. I, unfortunately, have to say many of you will not. This doesn’t mean that we didn’t like you or that you weren’t good enough. It just means that you weren’t what we were looking for at this time. I encourage you all to keep working at your art and continue to pursue your dreams. We had some outstanding performers that we auditioned and would like to present them to you once more. Enjoy the show!” the MC finished and left the stage. The lights dimmed and the show began. The first set placed themselves on stage and started singing in a gentle rhythm. After a moment they jumped into some pop music and began jumping around the stage to get the audience going. Every set did an outstanding job with their unique talent. Everyone gave great rounds of applause after each set had completed their segment on stage. About eight sets in, Kristina stepped out from the curtains and unleashed her vocals to the audience. She began singing about how she needed to be popular and began tripping over her own feet and intentionally made her voice crack as she was directed to act nerdy and clumsy. Now it was we, the dancers, time to step up. The four of us stepped out from the curtains, Serge's hip hop remix came into play and he moved center stage, took Kristina's hand and motioned her to copy him. Kristina mimicked Serge's moves in a sloppy and off balance style. I occasionally looked through the countless eyes staring towards the stage in hope I would spot the girl I shared so much intimacy with the previous night. Unfortunately I couldn't spend too much time searching for her when I had to keep my focus. I concentrated on making a flawless performance since the people I was performing for had doubled since the last time I stood on the stage. Bob Luke cued me from the audience. I ran to the end of the stage building momentum and let myself fly into a backflip. Rachel and our anonymous other jumped in after me and showed off their moves. Our part came to a finish and we walked off stage while the audience sent us a roaring applause. I didn't spot Jordan Fordyce while I was up on stage and was worried that I may not see her again, but I kept my spirits up. After the performance, the agent interviews was next in line for the event. This was possibly the most enticing part the of convention. This is where we got to find out if we would be offered employment from an agency or know if an agent wants to take us on. The call-backs were finally posted and I went to view them, my eyes searching in anticipation for my number to be listed on the board. Sure enough, I had two call backs: one for Bob Luke Studios of Disney, and one for Carolyn Acting Agencies in Toronto. I went to meet with those who had interest in my abilities. I entered a large congested room that was outlined by large tables, each table represented a company. I got into the line up for Bob Luke and waited for a one on one interview with him. After a short period of time, I looked over to the line up parallel to mine. Right across from me was Jordan Fordyce. She looked over, made eye contact, and formed a glowing smile. “There you are,” I said happily, stepping out of my line for a moment.

“Hey, I saw you on stage earlier, you were so good!” she said excitedly as she gave me a tight hug. I thanked her appreciatively and asked if she had received any call backs. She hadn't received any. The agents told her she was too short, didn't have the right measurements, but had complimented her vivid white teeth and told her that with some improvement she could be just the model they were looking for. She seemed to have taken the feedback quite negatively. “They have no idea what they're talking about,” I told her, “they're passing up the best model that could ever take part in their agency. Look at you, you're absolutely stunning,” I assured her. The smile she had from hearing those words were memorable. I had never seen a girl look more attractive than when she was smiling, it was even more true in her case. After our short discussion, I went back to the line for my call back. Fordyce and I agreed to meet up afterwards. I took a seat in front of Bob Luke's table. Bob Luke finally learned my name and took a look at the acting resume that I presented to him. He was giving me more instructions than interviewing me. Bob Luke made it clear that he wasn't interested in my acting ability but only in my dancing. This was a little disappointing due to the fact that dance was a secondary goal for me, however, I wasn't about to be picky. Even a moment in the industry would be sufficient for me. Disney is an American based company in the United States. I lived in Canada and they would not allow Canadians to work in the states without prior and notable experience. Bob Luke knew this, and had given me his email and personal cell phone number, telling me that when I acquired enough experience in my own country to work in the states, I can contact him and we can talk about a job offering. Then I went to Carolyn Acting Agencies from Toronto. An agent named Catherine with black hair and thick rimmed glasses told me that I stood out while doing my commercial. She sat there looking me up and down while chewing on the end of her pen. She further told me that she liked the highs and lows in my voice and that I had a unique look, however, it turned out her company wanted me to move to Toronto to be signed to their agency, another downfall for me as I was only 15, my parents would not be willing to move to Toronto, and I was far too young to do so myself. It seemed to be for nothing that I had come to the city of Edmonton, spent over a thousand of my savings to take my chances with the industry. I felt even more discouraged as a young african american shot up from his seat in a nearby line and shouted out to the public in glory, “I just got signed to Sony Records!” It wasn't all a waste though, I immensely enjoyed my time during the event and met an amazing girl who appeared to be my female counterpart, a girl who even shared the same name as I. After the call backs, I spoke to Rachel. It turned out she had been offered a role in a Disney post production called "Hannah Montana." She was told that it was a family program directed towards children. Rachel didn't want to be a part of a children’s show but later regretted it as it turned out to be a big hit.

I met up with Jordan Fordyce and told her about the unfortunate turn out of my interviews. “You're kidding me, right? You were practically famous at this event and you got nothing?” she stated in shock. “Seems so,” I said in a discouraged tone. “Awe, don't worry, Jordan. I know talent when I see it and I know you'll be famous one day.” “Thank you,” I smiled,” I know talent too, and you have every bit of my confidence that you will be an outstanding model some day.” “No, I think this it for me, this was my only chance. I begged my parents to let me come here for this, they won't dish out the money for it ever again. I don't think I want to go through the disapointment of being told I'm not good enough again either.” I felt so sad for her. Everything she wanted to be was a model and here are the people able to grant that to her and instead of doing, tell her she isn't good enough. But I suppose that's how the industry worked; you have to become what others want you to be in order to get somewhere. In a summary I viewed the representatives like this: “We want perfect, you're not perfect, too bad, next!” Fordyce and I made our way up the escalators, walked across the main auditorium and emerged into the frosty atmosphere – it got very cold this far north in October. We stood on a huge concrete balcony that ran along the south perimeter of the structure. We had a great view of the city and were alone with privacy. We observed some skateboarders below us from a distance and watched one wiped out as he attempted grinding on a rail. He landed flat on his ass. Fordyce and I burst into laughter and took a few steps back because the some of the skaters looked up and noticed us laughing at them. We spent time sharing our jokes and laughter, it was hard not to smile in her presence. We talked about our pet peeves that both lead us to the topic of our sisters. “I'm so not looking forward to the return trip,” Fordyce complained, “having to listen to my younger sister sing along to every female song on the stereo gives me such a headache.” “No way,” I laughed, “my sister does the exact same thing. There's some decent songs that I probably would've liked, but then my sister spends hours at a time singing out to the same tracks over and over again. It kind ruins the song for you.” “I know!” Fordyce exclaimed with rapport. “My sister has a terrible voice too, she can't sing at all.” “We'll enough about dislikes, what are some of the things you enjoy?” I asked changing the subject. “I love basketball and drinking,” she laughed, “I'm a party girl and I'm almost always out with my friends or at basketball practice.” Fordyce's phone dinged and she pulled it out of her back pocket to view the text message. “I have to go soon,” Fordyce said sadly, “do you live here? Because my family comes here quite often.” “No, I live in British Columbia, in a small town called Nelson.” “Great, I finally meet a cute guy and he lives ten-thousand miles away.” I blushed at her remark.

“Where exactly up north do you live?” I asked. “Grimshaw, no one has like ever heard of it,” she replied, “you don't seem much of a small town person. You seem like a city boy.” “Well, I love the city, I feel like I was made for it,” I told her as I began looking out at all the skyscrapers, “it feels so big, there's so much to do and I want to explore!” I looked into her eyes and they were captivating. This was perhaps the last time we would ever get to talk before we parted ways, I was saddened by the thought. I believe I met the most stunning girl of my life and time with her had been cut so short. She appeared saddened, probably by the same thought. I wanted to kiss her and her body language invited it in every way, but my nerves got the better of me. The awful ringing of her phone went off again. Fordyce answered the phone and replied with multiple 'Uh huh's' and 'Okay's' and then hung up. “That was my mom. My ride back to Grimshaw is ready,” she said gravely. We walked back inside the building and began making our way across the auditorium. Many employee's were all over the place putting away the tables, and packing up all the equipment. I glanced at Fordyce and knew I couldn't let my nerves do this to me. “Hold on!” I demanded. She turned to face me and I swiftly grabbed her around the waist and kissed her passionately. She wrapped one arm around me and brought her hand to the back of my head while interwining her lips with mine. Her kiss revealed all the tension that had built up while on the balcony. After a few moments we stepped out of each others grasps. “I’m going to miss you,” I said quietly. “Don’t worry, you’ll see me again. I’ll make sure of it.” she replied in a breathless whisper. I walked her to the front entrance of the building and it was silent for nearly the whole way there. It seemed that we were both afraid of the words 'goodbye' slipping out of our mouth. As we reached the front entrance, we found her mom standing in front of a taxi waiting for her. She looked at her mother, than looked at me, gave me a quick kiss, then disappeared through the door without a word. Her eyes stayed locked on mine as we stared at each other through the glass windows. She got into the vehicle and then she was gone. Now left in the almost vacant building, I walked over to the nearest pay phone and called a cab.

Jordan Fordyce and I at the Canadian Showcase of Model & Talent