Cares Monologues

For the George Brown College Playwriting course, we were asked to write several short monologues. These three monologues are short dialogues of myself discussing the CARES system for aging missing children by computer.

CARES (Computer Assisted Recovery Enhancement System), a computer system for aging missing children announced on July 4, 1986, was a joint project between the Metropolitan Toronto Police and IBM Canada Lab. CARES was the first computer-based child-aging system in the world. View CARES details and press coverage


1. Monologue – CARES

Picture it, 1986. Jim Clark was head of the Youth Bureau of the Metro Toronto Police, the organization that finds missing kids. The challenge was finding kids that had gone missing for years. His artist wife Betté was working with a doctor at Sick Kids Hospital learning how kids age.

Learning an Italian Accent

I have been through a fascinating exercise in the past few days. I am thinking of auditioning for a part. (Paravicini and The Mousetrap) The character is Italian so requires an Italian accent.

Basically an accent is when a speaker uses their native language phonetic rules to pronounce the English words. This gave me an idea. I went into the Amazon Web Services Polly. Polly is a text-to-speech engine. I put in the character’s dialog and asked Polly to treat it as Italian and read it.

Amazing. I had found another site on Italian accents for the stage. When I listened to Polly’s reading of the dialog, I hear many of the guidelines followed.

The Mouse on the Moon – Stageplay

On July 20, 1969 two spacecraft landed in the Sea of Tranquility

one from the most powerful nation on earth, the United States, the other from the smallest, the Duchy of Grand Fenwick.

Who got there first?


Adapted by Rich Helms from the book The Mouse on the Moon by Leonard Wibberley

© 2021 by Rich Helms
CIPO ref# 1188353
ISBN: 978-0-9938829-4-4
www.TheMouseOnTheMoon.com

Music: “The Complex” and “Marty Gots a Plan” by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License

Clarion Turf Racing Photo Wins Honourable Mention

Today my photo “Clarion Turf Racing” won the honourable mention at the SPARK Photo Festival Themed Juried Show. The theme this year was “Motion.” I originally shot this as a Kodachrome slide in 1970 at a race in Clarion, PA with a Russian Zenit-E 35mm camera.

The Zenit-E was just about the most manual camera ever. You even had to manually close the iris before pressing the shutter. I found the slide a few years ago while scanning with a slide scanner. It could scan with high enough resolution to print at 11×17 at 300 dpi in 48 bit colour. With photoshop I could pull out the detail and colours as well as clean up dust and such. When I heard the theme was “motion,” I immediately thought of this race.

I am so honoured to receive an Honourable Mention. I am privileged to be included in such a remarkable group of photographers.

Announcement Video


My announcement starts at 1:20

Mentos in Diet Coke

Did the classic Mentos in a bottle of Diet Coke for the grandkids. Dropped about 6 Mentos in. The video was shot with an iPhone 11 at 1080P 240 fps slow-motion. I thought it worked rather well. Diet Coke was used so there is no sugar mess left.

Rich Helms’ Farewell When He Left IBM in 1997

Recently while cleaning up my computer I found my farewell speech when I left IBM. I forgot many of these things I did. It is an interesting read.

Margaret stars in a pet store ad

What’s On Digest – Parksville/Qualicum approached me about using a picture of Margaret for an upcoming ad. Here is the result.

Bosley's Jun13

Funny toast to my new son-in-law at the wedding

May your banjo play bright and crisp
May your coffee be dark and rich
May your ‘shine be smooth and sweet
May your best houn’dog warm your feet

All good things I wish for you
But remember and it’s true
Treat her right and don’t be naughty
Or they will never find the body

A special thanks to Sue Reynolds and James Dewar who helped me with the poem structure. I was amazed how many hours it took to write a one minute poem.

Happy Canada Day

Happy Canada Day

Margaret Defends Crown

Proud Mother

Margaret Helms successfully defended her title, and for the second year in a row, captured the win in the large breed category of the “Doggy Fashion Show” at the Sunderland Maple Syrup Festival. The English Bulldog, who belongs to Dorothea and Rich Helms of Sunderland, was dressed in her Easter finery – pink feather boa and pink hat. Many thanks to Barb Thompson of Pawsitive Style Pet Food Accessories and Grooming in Sunderland, who once again generously sponsored this contest and provided great dog goodies to the participants and winners. Margaret is home now, and exhausted from the pressure of competing and posing for the paparazzi who hounded her for photos and quotes. Her take on the day: “Woof!”

Which way is the Easter parade?