Favorite Quotes Vol. XXXIII: They don’t fall down.

The audience at Godspell on Tuesday was treated to a talkback by Stephen Schwartz himself, who told great stories about everything from the origins of the Elphaba Theme in Wicked to why he won’t tell you what his favorite song in his own catalog is.

And in the midst of all that, plus a few juicy stories that he made the entire audience promise not to tell, he gave the attendees these words of wisdom when asked if he faced any obstacles in his career climb:

“Did I face any obstacles?  It’s a business of obstacles, actually.  It’s nothing but obstacles.  And that makes it hard.  How do you deal with it?  Well, you gotta be . . . a weeble.  Remember those?  Weebles wobble, but they don’t fall down.”

Half the audience was too young to know what a Weeble was.  But if you know what Stephen was talking about, then boy oh boy is this quote right on the money.

No one is numb to an obstacle, whether it’s a bad review, a deal gone sour, or just something that didn’t turn out the way it was “supposed to”.  If you weren’t affected by those things, if they didn’t make you wobble, well, you wouldn’t be human, and you wouldn’t have feelings, and if you don’t have feelings, well, then, the theater is the wrong place for you, because you can’t succeed without ’em.

But you can’t let the obstacles knock you all the way down.  Just rock back up, like Stephen said, and live to wobble another day.


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  • Ron Day says:

    Hi Ken, I’ve been a weeble for 30 years.
    I think most writers and actors, who keep on keeping on,
    are true weebles of this world.
    Keep-up the good work Ken!
    Best wishes,
    Ron Day,
    Manchester, England.

  • Lisa Pratt says:

    This has to be one of my favorite Ken Davenport blogs. For better or for worse, I’ve nailed the weeble thing…and in fact, find myself still nailing it. It’s why we do what we do, because for every weeble day, we rise a little smarter and stronger to strike onward again. Thanks for sharing the metaphor.

  • Bravo Bell says:

    Weebles the musical??

  • Mattchow says:

    Aww. Weebles. Now I miss my Weeble’s Hainted House. I may have to do a little searching on eBay.

  • janis says:

    Great one! Stephen Schwartz deserves to the Weeble
    award for profundity and Ken the Pulitzer for bringing
    it to us.

    Another profundity award goes to R. Rhodes for, “Don’t sweat the bad stuff. Sooner or later it either works out or wears off.”

  • janis says:

    If there not a Golden Blog Award, there should be.

    I’d nominate Schwartz for the Weeble Encouragment Award.

    I’d nominate Ken for the Energy, Perseverence and Selflessness Award.

    And I’d nominate my friend R. Rhodes for the Profound advice Award for reminding me when things go wrong that, “The bad stuff always either works out or wears off.”

  • janis says:

    Sorry. Thought the first one disappeared into cyberspace.

  • Lynn A. says:

    I do remember Weebles when they were popular and super catchy gingle –
    but this has been my mantra for the last few months –

    “For what it’s worth: it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start all over again. – F Scott Fitzgerald”

  • Debbie Saville says:

    I’ve always understood that when you are moving forward, there will be obstacles that will get in your way. I love the “weeble” effect because you do bounce back with determination to keep on…keeping on. Great blogs Ken! I always seem get the advice needed at the right time to keep moving forward with ideas, trying to move the dreams into reality.

  • Bryna David says:

    Dear Mr. Davenport, et al:

    There was a farmer’s field filled with both cows & bulls. When the earthquake struck all of the cows were thrown to the ground. The bulls remained standing.

    One of the cows got up and walked over to the head bull and asked, “How come all of us cows were thrown to the ground but not of of you bulls?”

    “Haven’t you heard?” replied the head bull. “We bulls wobble but we don’t fall down!”

    Yours truly,

    Bryan David
    Playwright & Lyricist


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